Online travel agency Expedia Inc on Thursday reported a higher-than-expected profit as travel bookings rose, boosting its shares 2 percent.
The largest online travel agency said the value of its travel bookings in the quarter was $6.68 billion, up 19 percent. Domestic bookings rose 15 percent, while international bookings rose 28 percent.
The company also had significant growth in advertising income, indicating that corporations are once again opening up the purse-strings for online marketing, Morningstar analyst Warren Miller said. This is especially beneficial to Expedia because most advertising revenue is nearly costless for the company.
The company said its second-quarter net income rose to $114.3 million, or 40 cents per share, from $40.9 million, or 14 cents per share, a year ago.
Excluding one-time items, Expedia said it earned 44 cents per share, besting analysts' average estimate of 42 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Revenue rose 8 percent to $834 million, but missed the analysts' average forecast of $845.5 million.
Expedia was the first of the three publicly traded online travel agencies to report its second-quarter earnings.
Priceline and Orbitz Worldwide are the other two companies.
The travel industry has suffered from the economic downturn and online travel companies responded by slashing fees and offering promotions to bolster bookings.
Shares rose 2.2 percent to $21.54 in extended trading on the Nasdaq.
(Reporting by Deepa Seetharaman; editing by Carol Bishopric, Bernard Orr)