TripAdvisor saw overall revenue decline for the second
quarter in a row as its Hotels, Media & Platform division fell short again.
Despite the drag on one part of the company's key metrics,
total adjusted EBITDA was up 17% to $128 million during the second quarter.
The Hotels, Media & Platform division is contributing in
a major way to the uplift in profit, with a 27% increase year over year.
Overall revenue increased from $376 million to $422 million
over the course of the first and second quarters, but year-over-year the
business is down 3% in the comparable three-month periods.
The Experiences & Dining wing of the business saw
revenues jump by over a quarter to $125 million -- the second reporting period
in a row that the division has seen a 20%-plus increase.
President and CEO Steve Kaufer says investments during 2019
in the division are "setting a foundation to increasingly monetize our
influence across more travel categories."
He added: "Phocuswright estimates that global travel
activities is a $159 billion market that is currently 80% offline. PwC
estimates the global restaurant market reached $1.6 trillion in 2018 and
expects its growth to accelerate through 2022.
"We want to reinforce our market-leading position now
and remain far from profit-taking mode. We could choose to operate this segment
closer to enterprise-level profit margins today; however, we believe investing
in platform expansion to capture market share and long-term growth is the best
way to maximize future profits and shareholder value."
Back in the Hotels, Media & Platform division, revenues
fell from $272 million to $254 million between the second quarter of 2018 and
the same period this year.
Kaufer said Hotels revenue decreased primarily due to
performance marketing optimizations throughout last year and, to a lesser
extent, adverse changes in foreign currency and lower SEO (search engine
"We attribute our SEO trends to Google increasingly
pushing its own hotel products in search results, a practice we anticipate will
receive increased focus from regulators moving forward," Kaufer said.
The division is concentrating on a number of strategic
initiatives on the back of its improved profitability, Kaufer said. These
include attempts to improve loyalty and membership, delivering a new
TripAdvisor brand marketing plan and expanding its B2B products for hoteliers.