Industry Research

Rebound: Not Time to Party or Panic

Posted on May 9, 2011 by LCT Staff - Also by this author

 Industry bottom line: Happier days are here again, but no way to say if it’s all good times ahead. The numbers clearly indicate an industry recovery in progress.

The 2011-12 LCT Fact Book survey provides a solid measure of relief this year, following the “terrible two” years of 2008 and 2009. We saw hints of an upturn as last year’s Fact Book went to press, but now we have some reliable numbers to show it.

Most notable this year was the high number of operators who responded to our annual survey, which was revised, rephrased, and reorganized for a changing industry. We used 460 responses from online and print survey forms, yielding a + 4.3% margin of error at a 95% confidence level. Most participants responded online. That makes sorting and compiling results mercifully easier and more accurate.

One added bonus you’ll see in the following pages are the Fact Book’s “Info Bursts.” These takeout items indicate added statistics gleaned from non-LCT sources that complement our survey findings.

Here are a few standout stats and trends from this year’s survey:

Corporate travel still climbing back: 44% of operator revenue in 2010 was derived from business/corporate clients, up from 36% in 2009, but still below 50% in 2008.

Airport advantages: Almost half of all chauffeured transportation business is connected to servicing airports.

Trendy with tech: Although tablet style computers such as the iPad have only been out a relatively short time, already one-fourth of operators are using them as part of their technology regimes.

Social media succeeds: 63% of operators have put their companies on Facebook while 32% of operators use Twitter for marketing/social contact.

Revenues UP: Of all operators who earned $3 million or less in annual revenues in 2010, the average annual revenue was $643,832, up from $489,993 in 2009. (LCT re-asked operators for their 2009 figures in this year’s survey).

Majority success: Almost 7 out of 10 operators reported a revenue increase from 2009 to 2010.

Holding their own: Even with the worst recession since the Great Depression, a full one-third (33%) of chauffeured transportation operators saw revenues actually increase in calendar years 2008 and 2009.

Not quite there yet: The average operator profit margin is almost back up to the 2007 level.

Despite the rosier numbers this year, we go to press well aware of the economic challenges gathering, with higher fuel prices, food inflation, anemic job growth, record federal deficits, revenue-strapped state governments, and falling home values.

But there are always countervailing good signs as well: Corporate profits are healthy, with a lot of corporate cash on the sidelines; investment and venture capital are up; the financial markets are holding their own; the economy has technically been growing since July 2009; and the political momentum is in favor of cutting government spending. We won’t make any predictions, but we can say the numbers look not bad for now, but not good enough yet for the long haul.

COMPLETE FACT BOOK SURVEY NUMBERS will be posted on LCT's redesigned web site, launching this summer.










View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

What's On The Must-Have List For Younger Travelers?

The line between business and leisure travel is blurrier than ever for Millennials.

Global Business Travel Likely To Advance Despite Uncertainty

Many signs show the global economy is improving. Total spending worldwide approached $1.3 trillion in 2016.

Stronger Economy Means Higher Travel Pricing In 2018

GBTA Convention Coverage: Air, hotel, and ground transportation rise on back of inflation, higher oil prices, and emerging markets.

Business Travel Spurs $547 Billion In GDP, 7.4 Million Jobs

GBTA Convention Coverage: Much of the industry's economy heft accrues directly to sectors that serve travelers.

America's Top Business Travel Cities

Factors include number of on-time flights, cost of lodging, reliability of mobile network coverage, traffic congestion levels, and emergency-room performance.

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment



See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - July 2017 $12.95 COVER STORY: * Why These Titans Work So Hard to Give it Away * *
LCT Magazine - June/Fact Book 2017 $47.95 * Facts & Stats * Directors & Guides *


Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment


Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close