By Ikechi Uko
Travel Business in Nigeria looked up in 2021. Nigeria is seen as one of the markets that is recovering the fastest in Travel Business in Africa.
Nigerian Airlines carried over 10 Million Passengers on domestic flights and 2 million International Passengers passed through Nigerian Airports. Nigerian Airlines added over 10 New Aircraft in December last year and lots of new orders for Brand New Planes were made this year.
The Hotels in Lagos and Abuja are not left out of the robust recovery as the Top Hotels are averaging over 50% occupancy and they have recalled most of their Staff.
Things are still tough with rising energy cost and falling naira rates creating new problems for players.
Figures are emerging on how the recovery happened. A lot of Nigerians travelled within the country and stayed in Hotels within.
The recovery is mostly driven by Domestic Travels.
It is believed that Nigerians spend over $1Billion dollars on International Travels annually.
A report by nairametrics.com says that the Top Nine Nigerian banks increased their spending on travel, hotel and other related expenditures in 2021, expending about 23 billion naira.15% higher than the previous year. This is according to data collated from the banks’ financial reports.
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Meanwhile Atqnews independent research based on data gleaned from sales Figures for Nigeria has revealed the Top 10 Nigerian Travel Agents that Grossed Billions of Naira in the last One Year. These Agencies control the Bulk of these Expenditure
The Top Agencies by billing Income are:
1. Wakanow. Initially an Online Travel Agencies it has now out grown the Traditional and Legacy Travel Agencies grossing over 30 Billion Naira from Ticket Billings. It also handles Tours, Hotels, Logistics and Visa Services.
2. Finchglow Travel with over 15 Billion Naira annual Billings.
3. SatGuru Travel and Tours grossed over 14 Billion Naira in Billings
4. Quantum Travels grossed over 12 Billion Naira in Billings.
5. Dees Travel and Tours Grossed over 9 Billion Naira in Billings.
6. TouchDown Travels grossed Over 8 Billion Naira in Billings.
7. TravelStart grossed over 8 Billion Naira in Billings
8. 247 Travels grossed over 7 Billion Naira in Billings.
9. Super International Travels grossed over 6 Billion Naira in Billings
10. Waheguru International Voyages grossed over 5 Billion Naira in Billings.
These Top agents are believed to Control 35% of the Nigerian Travel Market.
The Nairametric report on Banks says that the amount spent by the Banks includes the cost of travel, hotels, passages and other logistics tied to travelling within and outside the country.
The Top 9 banks are Access Bank, Fidelity Bank, Sterling Bank, United Bank for Africa, Zenith Bank, GTBank, Stanbic IBTC, First Bank and FCMB.
From analysis, the amount spent during the period is 15% higher than the N20 billion spent traveling by the banks the previous year (2020). The increase seen in 2021 could be attributed to the ease in lockdown and the resumption of economic activities locally and internationally compared to 2020 when movement was restricted due to the global pandemic.
Out of the total, tier-one banks, Access Bank, UBA, Zenith, First Bank, and GTBank paid out N21 billion which represents 91% of the total amount for business trips.
Nairametrics highlights the amount spent by the banks in order of amount spent as follows:
Fidelity bank spent N897 million on travel expenses in 2021. The amount reflects a 7% dip from the amount it saw during the same period the previous year at N964 million.
Fidelity bank saw its gross earnings improve in 2021 from N206 billion to N249 billion. Consequently, the profit for the period was reflective of this as it also improved from N27 billion during the pandemic year to N38 billion during the recovery year.
Zenith bank comes next on the list, recording N2.6 billion in travel and hotel expenses which depicts a 40% rise from the amount during the COVID period.
In its financial statement for the year 2021, the bank reported a profit after tax of N244.5 billion, the highest on record, and reflects a 6.07% increase year on year. This is on the back of growth seen in Interest Income from N420.81 billion to N427.60 billion in the current period.
First Bank of Nigeria spent N4.2 billion on travel and passages in 2021, a 21% rise from the N3.5 billion recorded in 2021.
The bank reported a profit after tax of N117.8 billion in 2021, up 73.9% y-o-y from N67.8 billion posted in 2020 while it profits before tax was N130.9 billion, up 77.9% y-o-y from N73.6 billion reported in 2020.
During the year, the bank’s non-interest income grew by 106.4% to N342.2 billion from N165.8 billion on the back of increased fees and commission income, treasury activities and other operating income. Similarly, it reported gross earnings of N716.8 billion, up 30.3% y-o-y from N550.3 billion posted in 2020.
UBA is the second-largest spender on business travel. The bank recorded a total of N5 billion which represents 28% of the total amount spent by banks spotlighted. The amount is also slightly up by 5% compared to the amount spent in 2020 for the same purpose.
The bank delivered a robust 20.3% growth in profit before tax to N153.1 billion in 2021, compared to N127.3 billion at the end of the 2020 financial year while it profits after tax rose grew by 8.7% to N118.7 billion in 2021, against N109.2 billion recorded the previous year.
Access Bank spent the highest on travel expenses in 2021 at N8 billion. The amount spent during the period is 36% of the total amount spent by the nine banks and also represents 16% increase from the N7.1 billion spent for the same purpose during the pandemic year.
The bank reported a profit of N160 billion in 2021, a 51.13% increase year on year while its net interest income grew by 14.64% from N262.95 billion to N301.46 billion in the current period.
A cursory look at the data shows that the bank maintains the top position as the highest spender on travel expenses. Last year, it was top on the list followed by UBA which recorded N4.94 billion.
This reinforces the bank’s commitment to maintaining international ties whilst spreading its tentacle to reach far and wide around the globe. The bank has headquarters in Nigeria with Ghana, Kenya, other African countries as well as the United Kingdom and recently extended to Botswana, Mozambique, South Africa and Zambia.
. FCMB – N564 million
. GT Bank – N483 million
. Sterling Bank – N415 million
. Stanbic IBTC – N255 million