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|Type||Public (ASX: FLT)|
|Headquarters||Brisbane, Queensland, Australia|
|Area served||Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States, South Africa, Hong Kong, Singapore, India and China|
|Key people||Graham 'Skroo' Turner (Managing Director) |
|Revenue||A$2.00 billion (2013)|
|Operating income||A$349.2 million (2013)|
|Profit||A$240.0 million (2013)|
|Employees||approx 15000 (2013)|
Flight Centre Travel Group is an Australian-based international travel company and the largest retail travel outlet in Australia. Its global operations include stores in New Zealand, the United States, United Kingdom and Canada, as well as outlets in India, China, Hong Kong, Singapore, and South Africa. The company is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange with an annual total turnover of $13.2 billion sales as at June 2012. It has more than 2,500 stores in 10 different countries with over 15,000 staff and owns several niche brands, including Student Flights, Escape Travel, Cruiseabout, Quickbeds and Liberty Travel.
Founded by Graham "Skroo" Turner in 1981, the first Flight Centre Australia store opening in Sydney in 1982 with assistance from Bill James. Bill now runs Flight Centre Foundation and sits on the board for the Kokoda Track Foundation   Turner and James had previously run a successful budget bus trip company in Europe called Topdeck.
By 1990, Flight Centre had opened stores in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States. Expansion slowed with the onset of the Gulf War, which closed several overseas offices. However, it picked up again with a move to South Africa in 1994 and Canada in early 1995, while a return to the United Kingdom was made later that year. United States operations recommenced in late 1999, with the company expanding its American operations with the purchase of Liberty Travel in 2008.
After decades of rapid and consistent growth in revenues and profits, Flight Centre flew into trouble in 2005 with its first ever decline in annual profit. For the year ending 30 June 2005, on a total revenue of $6.9 billion, its net profit was $67.9 million. Profit announcements for the half year ending 31 December 2005, showed a continuing fall in net profits to $33.6 million, a decline of 7.7% on the previous year.
Share prices fell even further at the height of the global financial crisis, with stock trading at less than $5 per share in 2009. However, strong retail performances in the Australian market have seen Flight Centre shares bounce back to a high of more than $51 in April 2014.
- "Annual Report 2011" (pdf). Flight Centre Limited. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
- André Sammartino (2007), 'Retail’, in Dick, H. & Merrett, D. (eds.), The Internationalisation Strategies of Small-Country Firms: The Australian Experience of Globalisation, Edward Elgar: Cheltenham, UK, pp.175–194.
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