Priceline Rises on Earnings Beat

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The Priceline Group Inc. (NASDAQ: PCLN) reported third-quarter financial results after markets closed on Monday. The company posted $31.18 in earnings per share (EPS) and $3.69 billion in revenue. There were consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters that called for $29.32 in EPS and $3.62 billion in revenue. The same period from last year had $25.35 in EPS and $3.1 billion in revenue.

In a separate report, the company announced that’s current interim Chief Executive Officer, Brett Keller, has been named Chief Executive Officer of, effective immediately. Mr. Keller will report to Jeffery H. Boyd, Interim CEO and Chairman of the Board for The Priceline Group.

Third quarter gross travel bookings of all travel services purchased by its customers, net of cancellations, totaled $18.5 billion, an increase of 25% over a year ago (roughly 26% on a constant-currency basis).

On the books, cash, cash equivalents, restricted cash, and short-term investments, totaled $4.38 billion at the end of the quarter, versus $2.65 billion at the end of 2015.

Jeffery H. Boyd, Chairman and Interim CEO of The Priceline Group, commented:

The Priceline Group brands executed well during our peak summer travel season. Globally, our accommodation business booked 150 million room nights in the 3rd quarter, up 29% over the same period last year. The acceleration in room night growth demonstrates the favorable market in which we operate as well as the value of our diverse global platform.

Boyd added:

We will continue to invest in smartly marketing our brands and in the tools and technology that benefit both our customers and partners in the online travel marketplace. We also look forward to pushing ahead with OpenTable to build on their strong brand with a strategy that supports both building the core business and international expansion at a more measured pace.

Shares of Priceline closed Monday at $1,480.13, with a consensus analyst price target of $1,585.25 and a 52-week trading range of $954.02 to $1,501.79. Following the release of the earnings report, the stock was up 3.6% at $1,533.09 in the after-hours trading session.

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