American Express Global Business Travel picked up the pace of its recovery in the fourth quarter, with total transaction recovery hitting 72 percent of 2019—an improvement of a percentage point from the previous quarter and 26 percentage points year over year.
Those results indicate Amex GBT is "clearly outpacing the broader market," CEO Paul Abbott said in an earnings call, citing a January survey of 637 travel industry professionals conducted by the Global Business Travel Association. "[Our] transaction recovery compares to the [GBTA] January survey that found the recovery of domestic business travel at 67 percent and international at 54 percent."
With small and midsized clients, Amex GBT said it is seeing an "all-time high" in win rates and customer satisfaction, and transaction recovery hit 82 percent of 2019 levels in the fourth quarter, up two percentage points from the previous quarter. The company signed new SME business valuing $2.1 billion for full-year 2022, and about a quarter of that came from companies with previously unmanaged programs, Abbott said.
Total transaction value for the fourth quarter was $5.9 billion, up from $2.7 billion in the fourth quarter of 2021. Revenue was up 84 percent year over year to $527 million.
Amex GBT expects growth to continue this year, with revenue growth in the range of 17 percent to 20 percent, he said.
"The business travel recovery continues, and the outlook remains positive with our customers," Abbott said. "Industry experts predict business travel spend will continue to grow and capacity will continue to increase, all supporting continued growth in 2023."
Amex GBT reported a net loss of $63 million for the quarter, compared with a $200 million loss in the fourth quarter of 2022. For the full year, the company's loss was $229 million, compared with $475 million in 2021.
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