Thomas Cook investors oppose its remuneration report at the annual general meeting
Thomas Cook said a vote on its new remuneration policy will be taken during its next AGM Reuters

Shares in Thomas Cook surged almost 7% on Wednesday (23 November), after the travel company posted better than expected profit as it revealed a fall in demand for booking in Turkey was offset by increasing demand for other destinations.

In the 12 months to 30 September, the FTSE 250-listed group reported an operating profit of £308 million ($381.6m, €359.7m), compared with analysts' expectations for a £296m figure and broadly unchanged from the £310m it recorded last year.

In September, Thomas Cook said its summer bookings fell by 4% as the tour operator was hit by a slide in demand for holidays in Turkey.

The holiday giant has suffered after an ongoing spate of terror attacks from a variety of groups in Turkey, as well as a failed military coup in the country in July.

As a result, demand for holidays to Turkey declined, forcing the company to move flight and hotel capacity away from the region and onto some of its Spanish destinations.

"We are pleased with what we have achieved," said chief executive Peter Fankhauser.

"We have had to follow the demand of our customers, who are choosing to go to the Spanish islands and mainland."

The weak pound has not had an effect on the company's profits yet and the company does not expect it to do so next year either, Fankhauser explained. He added that the company proposed a 0.5p per share for the 2016 full-year, in line with guidance it gave last year that it would make its first payout for five years in 2017.

"We are confident that our strategy for profitable growth [...] will help us to achieve a full-year operating result in line with current market expectations."

Looking forward to next year, the group said all its winter bookings from the UK were up 2%, compared to the previous year, while bookings from Germany were down 5% as holidaymakers have chosen against travelling to Turkey.

However, summer holidays, which constitute the company's most profitable market, were ahead across all its markets.

Meanwhile, the group added that it would soon implement a turnaround plan for Condor, its Germany-based airline, which continued to be hampered by weak demand and overcapacity in the airline market.

The overhaul plan will see the carrier focusing away from short-haul flights to longer-haul flights in a bid to improve profitability.