The Priceline Group Inc PCLN
Q2 2010 Earnings Call Transcript

Transcript Call Date 08/03/2010

Operator: Welcome to priceline Second Quarter 2010 Conference Call. Priceline will like to remind everyone that this call may contain forward-looking statements, which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual results may differ materially from those expressed, implied or forecasted in any such forward-looking statements.

Expressions of future goals and similar expressions reflecting something other than historical fact are intended to identify forward-looking statements. For a list of factors that could cause priceline's actual results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements, please refer to the safe harbor statement at the end of priceline's earnings press release as well as priceline's most recent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Unless required by law, priceline undertakes no obligation to update publicly any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

A copy of priceline's earnings press release together with an accompanying financial and statistical supplement is available in the Investor Relations section of priceline's website, located at

Now, I'd like to introduce priceline's speakers for this afternoon, Jeff Boyd and Dan Finnegan. Go ahead, gentlemen.

Jeffery H. Boyd - President and CEO: Thank you very much and welcome to the priceline Group’s second quarter conference call. I am here with priceline’s CFO, Dan Finnegan. I will make some opening remarks, Dan will give a detailed financial review, and then I will sum up. After the prepared portion, we will take questions.

The Group consisting primarily of,, and now TravelJigsaw reported consolidated gross bookings for the second quarter of approximately $3.4 billion, up 43% year-over-year. Pro forma net income was $158.2 million or $3.09 per share versus the $2.02 the prior year. Second quarter results surpassed First Call consensus estimates of $2.65 per share and the high end of our guidance for the quarter.

Worldwide hotel room night reservations were $23.2 million for the quarter, up 48% year-over-year. We are pleased with the level of growth in room night reservations in the quarter and with the degree of sequential deceleration as we start to comp against improving performance last year.

Our international business performed well with 67% gross bookings growth on a local currency basis, a decrease from 73% in the prior quarter. International gross bookings benefited from strong transaction growth in the back half of the quarter following the disruption caused by the Iceland volcano and an improvement in average daily rates.

This strength continues to-date in Q3 and together with the recent strengthening in the euro and pound results in a solid outlook for Q3. Geographic expansion, growth in hotel inventory, growth in new markets and adding results from Agoda and partial quarter results from TravelJigsaw also helped drive strong top line growth in the second quarter.

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