Press release

Despegar.com Announces 4Q19 Reported Gross Bookings Up 6% Year-Over-Year and 26% on an FX Neutral Basis

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Despegar.com, Corp. (NYSE: DESP), (“Despegar” or the “Company”) a leading online travel company in Latin America, today announced unaudited results for the three-months and fiscal year ended December 31, 2019. Financial results are expressed in U.S. dollars and are presented in accordance with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles.

Fourth Quarter 2019 Key Financial and Operating Highlights

(For definitions, see page 12)

● Gross bookings on an FX neutral basis increased 26% year-over-year (YoY) and as reported 6% year-over-year (YoY) to $1.3 billion

● Revenues were up 34% on an FX neutral basis and 10% as reported to $145.6 million

● Transactions and Room Nights up 7% and +3% YoY, respectively.

● Share of mobile transactions up 466 basis points (bps) YoY, accounting for 41% of total transactions

● Net Promoter Score (NPS) down 50 bps YoY

● Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products accounted for 63% of total revenue, up 130 bps when compared to 4Q18

● Excluding Extraordinary Charges, Adjusted EBITDA was $12.5 million. Reported Adjusted EBITDA was $8.3 million compared to $13.9 million in 4Q18.

● Operating cash flow of $15.3 million in 4Q19, compared to use of cash of $5.4 million in 4Q18

● Successful launch of Loyalty Program in Brazil

● Restructuring expenses mainly related to efficiency gains in support areas and fulfillment centers as a cost saving effort without hindering growth

Key Recent Business Events

● On January 27, 2020 Despegar agreed to acquire 100% of Best Day Travel Group, a leading online travel agency in Mexico, for a total consideration of approximately $136 million

● On February 14, 2020 the Company launched a co-branded credit card jointly with Banco Santander in Brazil

● On January 21, 2020 Despegar entered into a 10-year commercial partnership agreement with Tarjeta Naranja S.A., the leading branded proprietary credit card issuer in Argentina, and subsidiary of Grupo Financiero Galicia S.A.

Message from CEO

“We are pleased with the strong fourth quarter results and the successful execution of our strategic initiatives.

During the quarter Gross Bookings and Revenue increased 26% and 34%, respectively, on a FX neutral basis. Additionally, Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products accounted for 63% of total revenue, up 130 bps when compared to 4Q18, contributing to a 10% increase in revenues. Additionally, we gained 20bps of market share as the industry contracted in a low single digits range.

We have made significant achievements in the implementation of our strategy which was discussed at our recent Investor Day. We announced the acquisition of BestDay in Mexico, which will allow us not only to expand our presence in Mexico but also to strengthen our non-air share and to develop new capabilities both on the B2C and B2B verticals. We launched our loyalty program in Brazil which is a medium-term growth enabler. As the Partner of Choice in the region, we are entering into strategic agreements with very relevant industry companies, such as the introduction of a co-branded credit card in Brazil with Banco Santander and a commercial partnership with Tarjeta Naranja in Argentina. Additionally, we are also pleased by the benefits from our investment in brand building which is being reflected in increased use of our Mobile app which accounted for 41% of transactions in the fourth quarter.

The quarter and year, were not without some external challenges and some of them are expected to carry over into the first quarter. Nevertheless, looking ahead we remain focused on strengthening our business through targeted investments, maintaining a healthy balance sheet and a very focused integration strategy for both Viajes Falabella and Best Day.”

Operating and Financial Metrics Highlights
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg

2019

2018

% Chg
Operating metrics
Number of transactions

2.9

2.7

7%

10.7

10.4

3%

Gross bookings

1,280.9

$1,207.2

6%

4,734.3

$4,715.3

0%

Mix of mobile transactions

41%

36%

+466 bps

39%

34%

+508 bps
Financial metrics
Revenues

$145.6

$132.5

10%

$524.9

$530.6

(1%)

Air

$53.3

$50.3

6%

$201.6

$214.8

(6%)

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

$92.3

$82.3

12%

$323.2

$315.8

2%

Net income (loss)

($2.6)

$3.0

n.m.

($20.9)

$19.2

n.m.
Adjusted EBITDA

$8.3

$13.9

(40%)

$25.6

$67.6

(62%)

EPS Basic

($0.04)

$0.04

n.m.

($0.30)

$0.28

n.m.
EPS Diluted

($0.04)

$0.04

n.m.

($0.30)

$0.27

n.m.
Extraordinary Charges
One time severance expense

(2.2)

(2.2)

(0.8)

Bad Debt due to Exposure to Avianca Brasil (4Q- G&A Impact)

(2.0)

(2.0)

Charges from Exposure to Avianca Brasil (2Q – CoR Impact)

(1.6)

Rebranding Charges (2Q)

(8.6)

Adjusted EBITDA (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$12.5

$13.9

(10%)

$40.0

$68.4

(42%)

EPS Basic (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

0.01

0.04

(75%)

(0.13)

0.29

(145%)

EPS Diluted (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

0.01

0.04

(75%)

(0.13)

0.28

(146%)

 

Overview of Fourth Quarter 2019 Results

Key Operating Metrics
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 4Q18

% Chg

FX Neutral %
Chg

$

% of total

$

% of total

Gross Bookings

$1,280.9

$1,207.2

6%

26%

Average selling price (ASP) (in $)

$449

$451

(1%)

18%

Number of Transactions by Segment & Total
Air

1.7

58%

1.6

58%

6%

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

1.2

42%

1.1

42%

7%

Total Number of Transactions

2.9

100%

2.7

100%

7%

 

Fourth quarter 2019 results include three-months of operations from Viajes Falabella in Chile, Argentina Colombia and Peru.

Transactions rose 7% YoY to 2.9 million in 4Q19, and FX neutral gross bookings increased 26% YoY. As reported gross bookings increased 6% YoY to $1,280.9 million in 4Q19. The Company outperformed the Latin America air travel industry which experienced a single digit contraction in the fourth quarter in terms of gross bookings. This industry contraction is mostly explained by the macro volatility and currency depreciation experienced in the Company’s key markets, particularly Argentina and to a lesser extent Brazil. Additionally, social unrest in Chile throughout October and the beginning of November significantly contributed to the shrinkage of the travel industry in that country.

The Company’s business is organized into two segments: (1) Air, which consists of the sale of airline tickets, and (2) Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products, which consists of travel packages (the bundling of two or more products together which can include airline tickets and hotel rooms), as well as stand-alone sales of accommodations (including hotels and vacation rentals), car rentals, bus tickets, cruise tickets, travel insurance and destination services.

The share of higher-margin Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products transactions in 4Q19 were flat YoY at 42% and increased 30 bps in Gross Bookings.

While Despegar remains committed to enhancing customer satisfaction, a key strategic priority, NPS in 4Q19 decreased 50 basis points YoY. This was mainly due to several contingencies in the Air segment such as the cessation of operations of a peruvian airline together with, flight cancellations and reschedulings due to adverse climate conditions and social developments.

The average selling price (“ASP”) in 4Q19 increased 18% YoY on an FX neutral basis and decreased 1% on a reported basis to $449 per transaction. This FX neutral increase was largely driven by the acquisition of Viajes Falabella which sells higher ASP products and Despegar’s stand alone mix shift to packages, partially offset by a mix shift from international to domestic transactions in Brazil.

Despegar continues to drive mobile transaction growth, with total downloads exceeding 60 million at quarter end 4Q19. The number of mobile transactions increased 466 basis points YoY, with 41% of all transactions completed on the mobile platform.

Geographic Breakdown

Geographical Breakdown of Select Operating and Financial Metrics
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 vs. 4Q18 – As Reported
 
Argentina Brazil Rest of Latam Total
% Chg. % Chg. % Chg. % Chg.
Transactions (‘000)

13%

2%

8%

7%

Gross Bookings

13%

(1%)

9%

6%

ASP ($)

0%

(2%)

1%

(1%)

Revenues

10%

Gross Profit

14%

4Q19 vs. 4Q18 – FX Neutral Basis
 
Argentina Brazil Rest of Latam Total
% Chg. % Chg. % Chg. % Chg.
Transactions (‘000)

13%

2%

8%

7%

Gross Bookings

81%

7%

12%

26%

ASP ($)

61%

5%

4%

18%

Revenues

34%

Gross Profit

34%

During 4Q19, Brazil, Despegar´s largest market, accounting for 39% of total orders, reported a YoY increase of 2% in transactions, despite a significant capacity contraction in international air travel in the quarter. Gross bookings rose 7% YoY on an FX neutral basis, and decreased 1% as reported. Reported ASPs decreased 2% YoY (+5% FX neutral) as package transactions grew 8% shifting however from international to domestic. Additionally, Brazilian real depreciation of 7% YoY impacted ASPs leading to a slight contraction in as reported Gross Bookings.

In Argentina, on December 23, 2019, the Government imposed a new duty, which taxes at 30% any purchases of goods from abroad and services to be provided outside the country, including accommodations. This new tax also impacts the purchase of international passenger transport services. The estimated advancement of travel purchases before the implementation of this new tax led to a 13% increase in transactions. On a reported basis, gross bookings and ASPs in Argentina increased YoY by 13% and 1%, respectively. On an FX neutral basis, gross bookings increased 81% YoY and ASPs rose 61%.

Across the Rest of Latin America, Despegar reported an increase of 8% in transactions and 9% in gross bookings, while ASPs increased 1% year-over-year to $432 reflecting growth in ASP in international travel in Mexico. Good overall performance in Mexico more than offset a significant industry contraction in Chile due to the social unrest that the country experienced towards the end of 2019. On an FX neutral basis, gross bookings rose 12%, while ASPs increased 4%.

Revenue

Revenue Breakdown1
 
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg

$

% of total

$

% of total
Revenue by business segment (in $Ms)
Air

$53.3

37%

$50.3

38%

6%

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

$92.3

63%

$82.3

62%

12%

Total revenue

$145.6

100%

$132.5

100%

10%

Revenue per transaction (in $)
Air

$32.2

$32.3

(0%)

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

$77.1

$73.5

5%

Total revenue per transaction

$51.0

$49.5

3%

 
Total revenue margin

11.4%

11.0%

+39 bps
1.Net of sales tax

Revenues increased 34% YoY on a FX neutral basis in 4Q19. As reported revenues, increased 10% to $145.6 million, from $132.5 million in 4Q18, reflecting solid growth in Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products as well as revenue management actions put in place. Revenue margin increased 39 basis points YoY, to 11.4% in the quarter driven by growth in transactions of higher-margin stand-alone Packages, the positive impact from Viajes Falabella and increased customer fees. This more than offset: i) reduction in revenue margin due to the implementation of the new Loyalty Program in Brazil; and ii) a reduction in air supplier volume bonuses.

● Air segment revenue was $53.3 million in 4Q19, increasing 6% year-over-year from $50.3 million in the year-ago quarter. Higher revenues from air sales was driven by a selective increase in customer fees across all markets, particularly in Mexico and Argentina, along with a 6% increase in total air transactions resulting in air market share gains.

● Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products segment revenue increased 12% in 4Q19 to $92.3 million, from $82.3 million in the year-ago quarter. Transactions increased 7% YoY. Revenues per transaction increased 5% YoY, as both Accommodation Services and Package revenues grew this quarter. The share of Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products increased 130 bps YoY to 63% of total revenues in 4Q19.

Cost of Revenue and Gross Profit

Cost of Revenue and Gross Profit
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg
Revenue

$145.6

$132.5

10%

Cost of Revenue

$51.4

$49.7

3%

% of revenues

35.3%

37.5%

(222) bps
Gross Profit

$94.2

$82.8

14%

Gross Profit Margin

64.7%

62.5%

+222 bps
 

Cost of revenue, which mainly consists of credit card processing fees, bank fees related to customer financing installment plans offered and fulfillment center expenses, increased 3% YoY to $51.4 million in 4Q19 from $49.7 million in 4Q18. As a percentage of revenue, cost of revenue decreased 222 basis points to 35% from 38% in the year ago quarter.

The absolute year-on-year increase in cost of revenue was primarily driven by higher penetration of financed transactions in Argentina. This effect was partially offset by a slight decrease in the average interest rate in Argentina. Additionally, credit card merchant fee expense increased on greater transactions volume.

On an FX neutral basis, gross profit increased 34% to $111.3 million. As reported gross profit increased 14% YoY to $94.2 million in 4Q19.

Operating Expenses

Operating Expenses
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg
Selling and marketing

$49.6

$42.9

16%

% of revenues

34.1%

32.4%

+167 bps
General and administrative

$26.0

$17.6

48%

% of revenues

17.8%

13.3%

+456 bps
Technology and product development

$18.7

$16.4

14%

% of revenues

12.8%

12.4%

+46 bps
Total operating expenses

$94.2

$76.9

23%

Total operating expenses as a % of revenues

64.7%

58.0%

+669 bps
Extraordinary Charges
One time severance expense

$0.5

Rebranding Charges
Selling and marketing (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$49.1

$42.9

14%

% of revenues

33.7%

32.4%

+133 bps
One time severance expense

$0.7

Bad Debt due to Exposure to Avianca Brasil

$2.0

General and administrative (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$23.3

$17.6

32%

% of revenues

16.0%

13.3%

+269 bps
One time severance expense

$1.0

Technology and product development (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$17.7

$16.4

8%

% of revenues

12.1%

12.4%

(21) bps
Total operating expenses (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$90.1

$76.9

17%

Total operating expenses as a % of revenues (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

61.8%

58.0%

+381 bps

Total operating expenses in 4Q19 excluding the impact of Viajes Falabella and Extraordinary Charges increased 7% YoY to $81.3 million. This increase is associated with several projects underway including the development of the loyalty program.

Operating expenses in 4Q19 include two Extraordinary Charges: $2.2 million in restructuring related severance expense and $2.0 million in Avianca Brasil related bad debt. As reported Operating Expenses which include Viajes Falabella´s contribution this quarter and the Extraordinary Charges described above, operating expenses in 4Q19 increased 23% YoY to $94.2 million.

As a percentage of revenues, operating expenses excluding Extraordinary Charges, increased 381 basis points to 61.8% in 4Q19 from 58.0% in 4Q18.

Selling and marketing (S&M) expense would have been $45.0 million, representing an increase of 5% when excluding Viajes Falabella and a one time charge. This increase reflects the launch of the Loyalty Program in Brazil, partially offset by efficiencies gained in Direct Marketing. Viajes Falabella’s added $4.1 million to the S&M expense in connection with the operational costs of its stores and telesales operations. Additionally, an Extraordinary Charge of $0.5 million related to severance payments was included in this cost line.

Excluding Extraordinary Charges on a per transaction basis, S&M expense increased to $17.2 per transaction in 4Q19 from $16.0 in 4Q18 mainly due to the inclusion of Viajes Falabella’s marketing costs. As a percentage of revenues, S&M expenses increased 133 basis points to 33.7% in 4Q19, from 32.4% in 4Q18.

General and administrative (G&A) expense excluding Extraordinary Charges and the impact from Viajes Falabella would have increased 14% YoY to $20.1 million, mainly reflecting the impact of the export tax on services introduced in Argentina in January 2019 equivalent to $1.2 million in the quarter and an increase in variable compensation. This was partially offset by a reduction in personnel expenses and outsourced services.

Viajes Falabella accounted for $3.2 million and Extraordinary Charges for $2.7 million: $2.0 million in Avianca Brasil related bad debt and $0.7 million severance expense related. Excluding these two Extraordinary Charges, G&A as a percentage of revenues, increased 269 basis points to 16.0% in 4Q19 from 13.3% in 4Q18, reflecting the higher cost structure of Viajes Falabella’s offline operations.

Technology and product development expenses would have decreased 1% if excluding Viajes Falabella’s impact of $1.5 million, and an Extraordinary Charge of approximately $1.0 million related to severance expenses.

Excluding Extraordinary Charges, and as a percentage of revenue, technology and product expenses declined by 21 basis points YoY to 12.1% reflecting higher cost dilution in the quarter.

Financial Income/Expenses

In the fourth quarter of 2019, the Company reported a net financial expense of $6.7 million compared to zero in 4Q18. The increase was primarily driven by intercompany foreign exchange losses and lower interest income from invested cash balances as a result of lower interest rates. Foreign exchange losses are non cash items given the balance of assets and liabilities in different currencies the company conducts in business. Amounts were partially offset by lower financial expenses as a result of a decrease in discounted amounts and discount rate in comparison to 4Q18.

Income Taxes

The company reported an income tax gain of $4.1 million in 4Q19, compared to an expense of $2.9 million in 4Q18. The effective tax rate in 4Q19 was 61%, compared to 49% in 4Q18. The variation is mainly driven by the reversal of a deferred tax allowance.

Adjusted EBITDA & Margin

Adjusted EBITDA Reconciliation & Adjusted EBITDA Margin
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg
Net income/ (loss)

($2.6)

$3.0

(187%)

Add (deduct):
Financial expense, net

$6.7

$0.0

n.m.
Income tax expense

($4.1)

$2.9

(242%)

Depreciation expense

$1.1

$1.7

(35%)

Amortization of intangible assets

$5.1

$3.2

62%

Share-based compensation expense

$2.1

$3.1

(33%)

Adjusted EBITDA

$8.3

$13.9

(40%)

Adjusted EBITDA Margin

5.7%

10.5%

(477) bps
Extraordinary Charges
One time severance expense

($2.2)

Bad Debt

($2.0)

Charges from exposure to Avianca Brasil
Rebranding Charges
Adjusted EBITDA (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

$12.5

$13.9

(10%)

Adjusted EBITDA Margin (Excl. Extraordinary Charges)

8.6%

10.5%

(190) bps
 

Reported Adjusted EBITDA was $8.3 million in 4Q19 compared to $13.9 million in 4Q18. This resulted in an Adjusted EBITDA margin of 5.7% for 4Q19, compared with 10.5% in the same quarter of the prior year. Excluding the Extraordinary Charges previously discussed, comparable Adjusted EBITDA was $12.5 million, 10% lower than 4Q18 and Adjusted EBITDA margin decreased 190 bps YoY to 8.6%.

Year-on-year comparable Adjusted EBITDA performance reflects increases in Operating Expenses, mainly due to the introduction of a new Export Tax in Argentina which impacts the G&A line. These higher costs were partly offset by a 14% increase in Gross Profit.

Balance Sheet and Cash Flow

The Company’s cash and treasury operations are managed locally while subsidiaries’ dividends are paid directly to Despegar in Delaware, U.S. Additionally, Despegar’s cash balance majority is held in US dollars in the US and UK. Despegar minimizes its foreign currency exposures by managing natural hedges, netting its current assets and current liabilities in similarly denominated foreign currencies, and managing short term loans and investments for hedging purposes.

Cash and cash equivalents, including restricted cash, at December 31, 2019 was $313.6 million. During the quarter, cash and cash equivalents increased by $13.5 million, while the total debt balance increased $1.2 million.

Despegar reported cash generation from operating activities of $15.3 million compared to a use of cash of $5.4 million in 4Q18. This cash generation vis a vis 4Q18 mainly resulted from a decline in the Company’s credit card receivable balance in the period driven by better collection terms, a decrease in other assets and prepaid expenses driven by a drop in incentives and commissions receivables and in advances to suppliers. This was partially offset by a decrease in travel supplier payables due to lower sales growth as compared to 4Q18.

During 4Q19, the Company’s operational capital expenditures, were mainly related to platform development.

Subsequent Events

Despegar Announces 10-year Commercial Partnership Agreement With Naranja in Argentina

On January 21, 2020, Despegar announced it had entered into a 10-year Commercial Partnership Agreement with Tarjeta Naranja S.A. (Naranja), the leading branded proprietary credit card issuer in Argentina, and subsidiary of Grupo Financiero Galicia S.A. Through this agreement, Despegar will provide a white label online marketplace to Naranja to jointly sell Despegar’s travel products and services to Naranja’s five million customers. Naranja will carry the credit risk and together with Despegar will share the financing cost on an equal basis.

Despegar Agrees to Acquire 100% of Best Day Travel Group

On January 27, 2020, Despegar announced it agreed to acquire 100% of Best Day Travel Group, one of the leading travel agencies in Mexico, for a total consideration of approximately US$136 million, subject to the occurrence of certain closing and business conditions.

A portion of the purchase price is payable on a deferred basis and includes a variable component of up to circa +/- 10% of the total consideration, based on future performance.

According to Best Day, during 2019, the Company recorded estimated unaudited pro forma revenue and EBITDA of approximately US$140 million and US$8 million, respectively, with online sales accounting for approximately 70% of total sales. Approximately 75% of revenue is generated in Mexico, further strengthening Despegar’s footprint in this country. The remaining revenue is generated mainly in Brazil, Argentina, U.S. and Canada. Packages, Hotels and Other Travel Products account for approximately 95% of revenue.

Best Day operates a cross-platform business model. In addition to its Business to Consumer business operated through its online platform, call centers and more than 200 kiosks, the company offers ground transportation, tours and activities across Mexico main destinations. On the B2B front, Best Day provides online wholesale travel products to agencies worldwide through its subsidiary HotelDO as well as white label services for major travel vendors, including exclusive partnerships with the largest Mexican airlines operating their packages platforms. Despegar expects to maintain the Best Day brands and network of kiosks as well as key executives.

Despegar restructures its fulfillment centers

On February 5, 2020 Despegar restructured its fulfilment centers outsourcing a relevant portion of the activities in connection with customer service. With this restructuring, Despegar expects to obtain significant savings in Cost of Revenues which will allow the company to invest in other core areas of its business.

Despegar launches Co-branded Card in Brazil jointly with Banco Santander.

On February 14, Despegar launched a Co-branded credit card in Brazil jointly with Banco Santander. With this new product, clients can accumulate points with every purchase and exchange them for any product at Despegar. Customers can request the card on Despegar’s platform and, once approved will be able to make their first purchase at Decolar immediately after, without the need to wait for delivery of the physical card. This is the first travel card in Brazil to offer this benefit, reinforcing Despegar’s market position as technology innovator and pioneer.

Recent Events

Argentina Imposes New Tax on Travel Purchases by Residents

On December 23, 2019 a new tax on purchases made in foreign currencies was introduced in Argentina. This new duty places a 30% tax on the following transactions:

● Purchases by Argentinean residents of foreign services through credit/debit cards; and

● Acquisitions by Argentinean residents of services to be provided outside the country, contracted through Travel and Tourism agencies – wholesale and / or retailers – based in the country.

Argentina Considered Hyperinflationary Economy

As of July 1, 2018, as a result of a three-year cumulative inflation rate greater than 100% and following the guidance of ASC 830 the U.S. dollar became the functional currency of the Company’s Argentine subsidiary. This change in functional currency is being recognized prospectively in the financial statements. As a result, starting 3Q18 the impact of any change in currency exchange rate on the Company’s balance sheet accounts is reported in the Net financial income/(expense) line of the income statement instead of Other comprehensive income.

4Q19 Earnings Conference Call

When:

8:00 a.m. Eastern time, March 5, 2020

 

Who:

Mr. Damián Scokin, Chief Executive Officer

 

 

Mr. Alberto López-Gaffney, Chief Financial Officer

 

 

Ms. Natalia Nirenberg, Investor Relations

 

Dial-in:

1-844-750-4865 (U.S. domestic); 1-412-317-5275 (International)

 

Webcast:

CLICK HERE

 

Definitions and concepts

Average Selling Price (ASP): reflects gross bookings divided by the total number of transactions.

Gross Bookings: Gross bookings is an operating measure that represents the aggregate purchase price of all travel products booked by the Company’s customers through its platform during a given period. The Company generates substantially all of its revenue from commissions and other incentive payments paid by its suppliers and service fees paid by its customers for transactions through its platform, and, as a result, it monitors gross bookings as an important indicator of its ability to generate revenue.

Extraordinary Charges: one-time events that resulted in non-ordinary expenses.

Foreign Exchange (“FX”) Neutral calculated by using the average monthly exchange rate of each month of 2018 and applying it to the corresponding months in the current year, so as to calculate what the results would have been had exchange rates remained constant. These calculations do not include any other macroeconomic effect such as local currency inflation effects.

Number of Transactions: The number of transactions for a period is an operating measure that represents the total number of customer orders completed on our platform in such period. The number of transactions is an important metric because it is an indicator of the level of engagement with the Company’s customers and the scale of its business from period to period but, unlike gross bookings, the number of transactions is independent of the average selling price of each transaction, which can be influenced by fluctuations in currency exchange rates among other factors.

Revenue: The Company reports its revenue on a net basis, and in some cases on a gross basis, deducting cancellations and amounts that it collects as sales taxes. Despegar derives substantially all of its revenue from commissions and other incentive payments paid by its suppliers and service fees paid by its customers for transactions through its platform. To a lesser extent, Despegar also derives revenue from the sale of third-party advertisements on its websites and from certain suppliers when their brands appears in the Company advertisements in mass media.

Revenue Margin: calculated as revenue divided by gross bookings.

Seasonality: Despegar’s financial results experience fluctuations due to seasonal variations in demand for travel services. Bookings for vacation and leisure travel are generally higher during the fourth quarter, although to date and prior to the revenue recognition change beginning in the first quarter of 2018, the Company has recognized more revenue associated with those bookings in the fourth quarter of each year. Latin American travelers, particularly leisure travelers, who are Despegar’s primary customers, tend to travel most frequently at the end of the fourth quarter and during the first quarter of each year.

About Despegar.com

Despegar is the leading online travel company in Latin America. With over two decades of business experience and operating in 20 countries in the region, Despegar accompanies Latin American travelers from the moment they dream of taking a trip until they share their memories of that trip. Thanks to the strong commitment to technological development and customer service, Despegar offers a customized experience to more than 18 million customers.

Despegar’s websites and leading mobile apps, offer products from over 270 airlines, more than 512,000 accommodation options, as well as more than 1,190 car rental agencies and approximately 326 destination services suppliers with more than 6,000 activities throughout Latin America. The Company owns and operates two well-recognized brands, Despegar, its global brand, and Decolar, its Brazilian brand. Despegar is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: DESP). For more information, please visit www.despegar.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes forward-looking statements. We base these forward-looking statements on our current beliefs, expectations and projections about future events and financial trends affecting our business and our market. Many important factors could cause our actual results to differ substantially from those anticipated in our forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and we undertake no obligation to update publicly or to revise any forward-looking statements.

— Financial Tables Follow —

Unaudited Consolidated Statements of Operations for the three-month period ended December 31, 2019 (in thousands U.S. dollars, except as noted)

 
 
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg
Revenue

$145,627

$132,515

10%

Cost of revenue

51,387

49,703

3%

Gross profit

94,240

82,812

14%

Operating expenses
Selling and marketing

49,604

42,925

16%

General and administrative

25,980

17,599

48%

Technology and product development

18,663

16,376

14%

Total operating expenses

94,247

76,900

23%

 
Operating income

(7)

5,912

(100%)

Net financial income (expense)

(6,705)

(18)

n.m.
Net income before income taxes

(6,712)

5,894

(214%)

Income tax expense

(4,067)

2,864

(242%)

Net income

(2,645)

3,030

(187%)

 
Basic EPS (in $)

(0.04)

0.04

(187%)

Diluted EPS (in $)

(0.04)

0.04

(188%)

Basic shares weighted average1

69,539

69,187

Diluted shares weighted average1

70,689

71,287

As a % of Revenues
Cost of revenue

35.3%

37.5%

(222) bps
Gross profit

64.7%

62.5%

+222 bps
Operating expenses
Selling and marketing

34.1%

32.4%

+167 bps
General and administrative

17.8%

13.3%

+456 bps
Technology and product development

12.8%

12.4%

+46 bps
Total operating expenses

64.7%

58.0%

+669 bps
Operating income

0.0%

4.5%

(447) bps
Net income before income taxes

-4.6%

4.4%

(906) bps
Net income

-1.8%

2.3%

(410) bps
1.In thousands

Key Financial & Operating Trended Metrics (in thousands U.S. dollars, except as noted)

1Q17 2Q17 3Q17 4Q17 1Q18 2Q18 3Q18 4Q18 1Q19 2Q19 3Q19 4Q19
FINANCIAL RESULTS
Revenue

$124,999

$123,462

$131,468

$144,011

$148,593

$128,259

$121,247

$132,515

$133,114

$114,087

$132,048

$145,627

Revenue Recognition Adjustment

($3,321)

($59)

$1,310

$7,578

Cost of revenue

31,140

35,087

37,869

38,383

43,646

42,088

36,673

49,703

45,245

40,342

42,591

51,387

Gross profit

90,538

88,316

94,909

113,206

104,947

86,171

84,574

82,812

87,869

73,745

89,457

94,240

Operating expenses
Selling and marketing

35,546

43,289

41,097

46,356

46,410

43,450

41,572

42,925

40,933

50,701

46,656

49,604

General and administrative

18,869

18,618

15,318

19,821

15,888

16,986

17,130

17,599

20,638

21,254

25,090

25,980

Technology and product development

15,408

17,644

18,907

19,349

19,225

18,732

16,821

16,376

18,713

18,077

17,922

18,663

Total operating expenses

69,823

79,551

75,322

85,526

81,523

79,168

75,523

76,900

80,284

90,032

89,668

94,247

Operating income

20,715

8,765

19,587

27,680

23,424

7,003

9,051

5,912

7,585

(16,287)

(211)

(7)

Net financial income (expense)

(6,156)

(1,611)

(2,880)

(6,232)

(2,831)

(5,292)

(11,026)

(18)

(5,220)

(1,663)

(3,627)

(6,705)

Net income before income taxes

14,559

7,154

16,707

21,448

20,593

1,711

(1,975)

5,894

2,365

(17,950)

(3,838)

(6,712)

Adj. Net Income tax expense

2,418

4,254

4,373

2,617

4,235

471

(501)

2,864

479

(1,483)

(154)

(4,067)

Income tax expense

2,486

3,806

4,190

1,512

4,235

471

(501)

2,864

479

(1,483)

(154)

(4,067)

Adjustment

$68

($448)

($183)

($1,105)

Net income /(loss)

12,141

2,900

12,334

18,831

16,358

1,240

(1,474)

3,030

1,886

(16,467)

(3,684)

(2,645)

Adjusted EBITDA

$24,751

$13,096

$24,337

$32,678

$27,284

$11,972

$14,520

$13,868

$15,182

($7,323)

$9,410

$8,292

 
KEY METRICS
Operational
Gross bookings

$1,019,102

$1,061,026

$1,116,022

$1,258,398

$1,231,496

$1,184,355

$1,092,287

$1,207,186

$1,157,512

$1,118,134

$1,177,728

$1,280,883

– YoY growth

54%

40%

32%

26%

21%

12%

(2%)

(4%)

(6%)

(6%)

8%

6%

Number of transactions

2,129

2,210

2,298

2,419

2,514

2,607

2,596

2,676

2,652

2,448

2,723

2,855

– YoY growth

30%

30%

25%

19%

18%

18%

13%

11%

5%

(6%)

5%

7%

Air

1,246

1,325

1,328

1,386

1,362

1,513

1,512

1,557

1,517

1,459

1,586

1,658

– YoY growth

34%

31%

22%

13%

9%

14%

14%

12%

11%

(4%)

5%

6%

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

883

885

970

1,033

1,152

1,094

1,085

1,119

1,135

989

1,137

1,197

– YoY growth

25%

27%

29%

27%

30%

24%

12%

8%

(1%)

(10%)

5%

7%

Revenue per transaction

$57.2

$55.8

$57.8

$62.7

$59.1

$49.2

$46.7

$49.5

$50.2

$46.6

$48.5

$51.0

– YoY growth

3%

(12%)

(18%)

(21%)

(15%)

(5%)

4%

3%

Air

$45.6

$45.2

$44.3

$47.7

$44.7

$35.1

$33.4

$32.3

$32.8

$32.5

$32.3

$32.2

– YoY growth

(2%)

(22%)

(25%)

(32%)

(27%)

(8%)

(3%)

(0%)

Packages, Hotels & Other Travel Products

$73.5

$71.8

$76.2

$82.7

$76.2

$68.6

$65.2

$73.5

$73.5

$67.5

$71.1

$77.1

– YoY growth

4%

(4%)

(14%)

(11%)

(4%)

(2%)

9%

5%

ASPs

$479

$480

$486

$520

$490

$454

$421

$451

$436

$457

$433

$449

– YoY growth

18%

8%

6%

6%

2%

(5%)

(13%)

(13%)

(11%)

1%

3%

(1%)

 
Net income/ (loss)

$12,141

$2,900

$12,334

$18,831

$16,358

$1,240

($1,474)

$3,030

$1,886

($16,467)

($3,684)

($2,645)

Add (deduct):
Financial expense, net

6,156

1,611

2,880

6,232

2,831

5,292

11,026

18

5,220

1,663

3,627

6,705

Income tax expense

2,418

4,254

4,373

2,617

4,235

471

(501)

2,864

479

(1,483)

(154)

(4,067)

Depreciation expense

1,343

1,362

1,337

1,033

859

1,475

1,338

1,676

845

2,683

2,036

1,094

Amortization of intangible assets

1,517

2,039

2,454

2,741

2,018

2,228

2,738

3,156

3,753

3,089

4,195

5,100

Share-based compensation expense

1,176

930

959

1,224

983

1,266

1,393

3,124

2,999

3,192

3,390

2,105

Adjusted EBITDA

$24,751

$13,096

$24,337

$32,678

$27,284

$11,972

$14,520

$13,868

$15,182

($7,323)

$9,410

$8,292

Unaudited Consolidated Balance Sheets as of December 31, 2019 (in thousands U.S. dollars, except as noted)

As of December 31, 2019 As of December 31, 2018
ASSETS
Current assets
Cash and cash equivalents

$309,187

$346,480

Restricted cash and cash equivalents

$4,457

$5,709

Accounts receivable, net of allowances

$213,551

$228,448

Related party receivable

19,555

8,653

Other current assets and prepaid expenses

69,694

68,471

Total current assets

616,444

657,761

Non-current assets
Other Assets

25,351

12,751

Restricted cash and cash equivalents
Right of use

7,890

Property and equipment net

21,205

19,716

Intangible assets, net

49,619

37,512

Goodwill

47,326

36,207

Total non-current assets

151,391

106,186

TOTAL ASSETS

767,835

763,947

LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS’ DEFICIT
Current liabilities
Accounts payable and accrued expenses

54,495

42,353

Travel suppliers payable

206,954

185,450

Related party payable

86,602

83,904

Loans and other financial liabilities

19,209

31,162

Deferred Revenue

8,853

8,229

Other liabilities

57,119

33,270

Contingent liabilities

6,297

4,794

Lease liabilities

4,555

Total current liabilities

444,084

389,162

Non-current liabilities
Other liabilities

1,427

243

Contingent liabilities

54

1,968

Lease liabilities

3,034

Related party liability

125,000

125,000

Total non-current liabilities

129,515

127,211

TOTAL LIABILITIES

573,599

516,373

 
SHAREHOLDERS’ EQUITY (DEFICIT)
Common stock

261,608

255,254

Additional paid-in capital

326,959

321,627

Other reserves

(728)

(728)

Accumulated other comprehensive income

1,175

3,051

Accumulated losses

(326,511)

(305,600)

Treasury Stock

(68,267)

(26,030)

Total Shareholders’ Equity Attributable / (Deficit) to Despegar.com Corp

194,236

247,574

TOTAL LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS’ EQUITY

767,835

763,947

Unaudited Statements of Cash Flows for the three-month period ended December 31, 2019 and 2018 (in thousands U.S. dollars, except as noted)

3 months ended December 31, Twelve months ended December 31,

2019

2018

2019

2018

Cash flows from operating activities
Net income

($2,645)

$3,030

($20,910)

$19,154

Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash flow from operating activities
Unrealized foreign currency translation losses

(2,231)

(2,565)

6,748

(1,088)

Depreciation expense

1,094

1,313

6,659

4,985

Amortization of intangible assets

5,100

3,156

16,137

10,140

Impairment of long live assets

363

363

Disposals of property and equipment

597

Stock based compensation expense

2,105

3,124

11,686

6,766

Interest and penalties

597

(103)

1,228

494

Income taxes

(5,408)

1,589

(9,666)

2,876

Allowance for doubtful accounts

2,343

749

4,294

1,062

Provision / (recovery) for contingencies

1,386

1,079

1,603

2,021

Changes in assets and liabilities, net of non-cash transactions
(Increase) / Decrease in accounts receivable, net of allowances

(16,437)

(36,805)

1,995

(54,705)

(Increase) / Decrease in related party receivables

(8,052)

(2,137)

(10,905)

(3,406)

(Increase) / Decrease in other assets and prepaid expenses

(7,394)

(15,914)

(14,916)

(61,302)

Increase / (Decrease) in accounts payable and accrued expenses

2,523

(4,062)

12,007

4,277

Increase / (Decrease) in travel suppliers payable

19,305

42,253

17,761

42,789

Increase / (Decrease) in other liabilities

14,688

(4,783)

24,531

3,309

Increase / (Decrease) in contingencies

(4)

(181)

(1,990)

(5,567)

Increase / (Decrease) in related party liabilities

8,333

(530)

3,678

4,203

Increase / (Decrease) in deferred revenue

(42)

4,989

628

6,009

Net cash flows provided by / (used in) operating activities

15,261

(5,435)

51,165

(17,620)

Cash flows from investing activities
Payments for acquired business, net of cash acquired

(228)

Acquisition of property and equipment

(800)

(4,692)

(8,362)

(13,085)

Increase of intangible assets including internal-use software and website development

(5,271)

(4,247)

(28,277)

(13,494)

(Increase) / Decrease in restricted cash and cash equivalents
Net cash (used in) /provided by investing activities

(6,071)

(8,939)

(36,867)

(26,579)

Cash flows from financing activities
Increase / (Decrease) in loans and other financial liabilities

1,920

621

(11,507)

24,637

Capital contributions

136

Lease obligations

589

(280)

Treasury Stock

(10,234)

(42,237)

(26,030)

Net cash (used in) / provided by financing activities

2,509

(9,613)

(54,024)

(1,257)

Effect of exchange rate changes on cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash

1,836

(518)

1,181

(13,132)

Net increase / (decrease) in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash

13,535

(24,505)

(38,545)

(58,588)

Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash as of beginning of the period

300,109

376,694

352,189

410,777

Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash as of end of the period

313,644

352,189

313,644

352,189

 

Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures

This announcement includes certain references to Adjusted EBITDA and non-GAAP financial measures. The Company defines:

Adjusted EBITDA is defined as net income/(loss) exclusive of financial income/(expense), income tax, depreciation, amortization and share-based compensation expense.

Adjusted EBITDA is not a measure recognized under U.S. GAAP. Accordingly, readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on this information and should note that these measures as calculated by the Company, differ materially from similarly titled measures reported by other companies, including its competitors. Adjusted EBITDA margin refers to Adjusted EBITDA as defined above divided by revenue.

To supplement our consolidated financial statements presented in accordance with U.S. GAAP, we use foreign exchange (“FX”) neutral measures.

This non-GAAP measure should not be considered in isolation or as a substitute for measures of performance prepared in accordance with U.S. GAAP and may be different from non-GAAP measures used by other companies. In addition, this non-GAAP measure is not based on any comprehensive set of accounting rules or principles. Non-GAAP measures have limitations in that they do not reflect all of the amounts associated with our results of operations as determined in accordance with U.S. GAAP. This non-GAAP financial measure should only be used to evaluate our results of operations in conjunction with the most comparable U.S. GAAP financial measures.

Reconciliation of this non-GAAP financial measure to the most comparable U.S. GAAP financial measures can be found in the tables included in this quarterly earnings release.

The Company believes that reconciliation of FX neutral measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measure provides investors an overall understanding of our current financial performance and its prospects for the future. Specifically, we believe this non-GAAP measure provide useful information to both management and investors by excluding the foreign currency exchange rate impact that may not be indicative of our core operating results and business outlook.

The FX neutral measures were calculated by using the average monthly exchange rates for each month during 2018 and applying them to the corresponding months in 2019, so as to calculate what our results would have been had exchange rates remained stable from one year to the next. The table below excludes intercompany allocation FX effects. Finally, this measure does not include any other macroeconomic effect such as local currency inflation effects, the impact on impairment calculations or any price adjustment to compensate local currency inflation or devaluations.

The following table sets forth the FX neutral measures related to our reported results of the operations for the three-month period ended December 31, 2019:

Geographical Breakdown of Select Operating and Financial Metrics
(In millions, except as noted)
4Q19 vs. 4Q18 – As Reported
 
Argentina Brazil Rest of Latin America Total
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg.
Transactions (‘000)

629

558

12.7%

1,105

1,085

1.8%

1,120

1,033

8.5%

2,855

2,676

6.7%

Gross Bookings

304.6

268.7

13.4%

492.5

496.0

(0.7%)

483.4

442.5

9.2%

1,280

1,207

6.1%

ASP ($)

484

481

0.6%

446

457

(2.5%)

431

429

0.7%

448

451

(0.6%)

Revenues

145.6

132.2

10.2%

Gross Profit

94.2

82.8

13.8%

4Q19 vs. 4Q18 – FX Neutral Basis
 
Argentina Brazil Rest of Latin America Total
4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg. 4Q19 4Q18 % Chg.
Transactions (‘000)

629

558

12.7%

1,105

1,085

1.8%

1,120

1,033

8.5%

2,855

2,676

6.7%

Gross Bookings

487

269

81.1%

532

496

7.3%

498

443

12.5%

1,517

1,207

25.6%

ASP ($)

773

481

60.7%

482

457

5.4%

444

429

3.7%

531

451

17.8%

Revenues

177

133

33.8%

Gross Profit

111

83

34.4%