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Market Cap of Top Five Online Travel Companies Jumped by $54B in Four Months, Expedia the Biggest Gainer

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The Covid-19 pandemic has hit the travel industry hard, including online travel agencies, whose revenues and reservations dipped to the lowest point in years amid the lockdown. However, as the entire market started its long and challenging way to recovery, the stock price of the leading online travel companies increased over the last few months.

According to data presented by TradingPlatforms.com, the combined market capitalization of Booking.com, Airbnb, Expedia, Trip.com, and MakeMyTrip, as the world’s largest online travel companies, jumped by $54bn since the beginning of the year and hit $306.3bn last week.

Airbnb’s Market Cap Jumped by 20%, Booking.com Up by $16.4B

The worst year in tourism history ended with the most anticipated US IPO in 2020. Shares of the world’s leading online company, Airbnb, more than doubled in their stock market debut on Nasdaq in December, valuing the home rental firm at $144.7 billion, far above the market cap of Booking.com and Expedia as the largest competitors.

As lockdowns eased, more travelers opted to book homes instead of hotels, especially away from major cities, helping Airbnb alleviate the financial losses caused by travel restrictions. Despite that, the San-Francisco-based company ended 2020 with $3.4bn in revenue, 30% less than before the pandemic struck.

Nevertheless, the YCharts data revealed Airbnb`s market cap jumped by $28.9bn since the beginning of the year. After reaching close to $210bn in March, the combined value of the company’s stocks dropped to $173.6bn last week, 20% more than in December.

As the second-largest online travel company globally, Booking Holdings also suffered substantial losses amid the pandemic. The company’s financial results revealed annual revenues plunged by 55% YoY to $6.8bn last year. Nevertheless, its market cap jumped by 19% since the beginning of 2021. In December 2020, the combined value of shares of a Dutch online travel agency stood at $84.7bn. Over the last four months, this figure jumped by $16.4bn and hit $101.1bn last week.

Expedia Group`s Market Cap Surged by 48%, the Biggest Increase Among the Top Five Companies

Although far behind Airbnb and Booking.com as the two leading players in the online travel industry, Expedia group witnessed the most significant market cap increase this year. In December, the market capitalization of the US online travel company for consumer and small business travel stood at $17.5bn. After reaching an all-time high of $26bn in March, Expedia’s market cap slipped to $25.9bn last week, a 48% increase in four months.

Trip.com, as the fifth-largest online travel company, hit $2.9bn in market cap in the last week of April, 16% more than in December. MakeMyTrip follows with a 7% increase in this period and $2.8bn in market cap as of the last week.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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NCDMB and NEXIM Sign $30 Million Agreement to Support Oil and Gas Services Firms

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The Nigerian Content Development Monitoring Board (NCDMB) and the Nigerian Export-Import Bank (NEXIM) yesterday signed a $30 million agreement on working capital and capacity building fund to support oil and gas services firms.

Simbi Wabote, Executive Secretary, NCDMB and Managing Director, NEXIM Bank, Abba Bello, signed the funding agreement at the Abuja office of the Nigerian content monitoring agency.

Wabote said the Oil Producers Trade Section, Independent Petroleum Producers Group and Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria had raised concerns over funding challenges confronting oil services firms, as this had made most of the companies to consider downsizing their staff.

He said, “The OPTS and IPPG had at some point raised before the NCDMB the inability of most indigenous contractors to provide services to them due to challenges of funding.

“This was especially when we got struck by the COVID-19 pandemic. I recall receiving several letters particularly from IPPG trying to see how we can support this.”

He added, “I also recall receiving similar letters from PETAN when the COVID-19 struck and most of their members had nothing to do anymore.

“This is because companies were shut down and their members were threatening on how to downsize and take Nigerians off their payrolls.

“Based on this, we then set up a committee to say how do we support these firms with the provision of working capital.”

Wabote noted the roll-out date for the fund would be July 1, 2021 and that the fund size of $30m would be boosted by matching funds of the same amount to be provided by NEXIM in naira (to be converted at prevailing official exchange rate).

“The scheme shall cover loans for working capital support and capacity building, oil service contracts, invoice discounting including acquisition of low-end equipment to service short-term contracts/service obligations,” he stated.

He said the target market comprised Nigerian oil service providers which belonged to a professional association in the Nigerian oil and gas industry and commercially viable with a business relationship with either an international oil company or a major Nigerian oil firm.

“Maximum amount that can be borrowed by a single obligor is $1m or its naira equivalent at the official exchange rate prevailing at the time of borrowing,” Wabote said.

He added, “Tenor shall be up to 12 months for working capital loans and up to three years for capacity building loans with moratorium of up to 12 months.

“The applicable interest rate shall be five per cent per annum all-in for dollar-denominated loans and eight per cent all-in per annum for naira-denominated loans and the rate shall be fixed throughout the tenor of the loan.”

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LivingTrust Mortgage Bank Appoints Mr. Timothy Olorunsogo Gbadeyan as Company’s Secretary

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LivingTrust Mortgage bank has appointed Mr. Timothy Olorunsogo Gbadeyan as company secretary/head of legal services.

The bank disclosed in a statement signed by Ikechukwu Omuku, the Finance Officer/Head, Investor Relations, LivingTrust Mortgage Bank Plc.

The statement reads “We wish to notify The Nigerian Stock Exchange and the investing public of the appointment Mr. Timothy Olorunsogo Gbadeyan as Company Secretary/Head, Legal Services of LivingTrust Mortgage Bank Plc.

“Mr. Gbadeyan is a consummate corporate attorney with experiential background in deals advisory, real estate finance, facioring, general commercial transactions, corporate governance, company secretarial services and regulatory compliance. Until his appointment, he was the Head of Legal Services of Infinity Trust Mortgage Bank Plc.”

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Farmforte, Others Signs MoU To Strengthen and Sustain Growth in Agricultural Sector

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Farmforte Limited has signed a strategic Memorandum of Understanding with the Agricultural Fresh Produce Growers and Exporters Association of Nigeria; HYBR, a pan-African innovation firm; and ALTS, a consulting and strategy development firm.

The firm said in a statement on Sunday that the partnership would strengthen common interest cooperation and stimulate inclusive and sustainable growth within the agricultural sector, by capitalising on the synergy and comparative advantage offered by each organisation.

Speaking during the signing ceremony, Farmforte Co-Chief Executive Officer, Osazuwa Osayi, said, “Our mid to long-term strategic goals are further reaffirmed, as this partnership will facilitate the sharing of knowledge, ideas, and expertise across the agricultural sector.

“We will collectively address initiatives and approaches concerning agricultural investments, food security, and the overall robustness of the value chain.”

He said the collaboration would also unlock the full potential of the sector and place it on a renewed path for success, especially within a post-pandemic economy.

The President of AFGEAN, Tajuddeen Dantata, said, “By creating dialogue and fostering investment in the horticulture sector, this partnership will endeavor to support Farmforte in its exporting efforts by improving operational efficacy and cost-savings, while ultimately driving socio-economic growth in the country.”

The Chief Executive Officer, HYBR, Charles Ojei, said to drive inclusion, sustainability, job creation, and Nigeria’s overall economic growth, the optimisation of the agriculture value chain was critical.

“This collaboration is a fusion of the complementary capabilities of all partners to move a bigger agenda forward.”

The Managing Partner, ALTS, Akintunde Sawyerr, said, “The goal of this partnership is to support Farmforte’s vision of becoming the largest agribusiness by 2035 via scalable and world-class innovation across its enterprise.”

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