Travel Expert (Asia) Enterprises, a leader in the frequent individual traveller segment of the agency business, aims to raise HK$50 million through an initial public offering to expand its corporate business and fund possible expansion on the mainland and in other parts of Asia. The company plans to sell 100 million new shares. At 56 to 69 HK cents, the initial price range represents nine to 11 times the firm's earnings per share for the year to March 31. The company - founded in 1986 by Daniel Ko Wai-ming, a former Midland Realty managing director, and his wife Cheng Hang-fan, who used to be a travel agency marketing manager - offers packages and booking services in its more than 50 shops in Hong Kong, targeting travellers with their own itineraries. The agency had about 10 per cent of the frequent individual traveller market - worth HK$10.23 billion - last year, according to a Euromonitor report commissioned by Travel Expert. The firm has applied to set up a wholly owned unit in Shenzhen. Once approved, it expected the unit to be restricted to domestic tours in the first year, Hong Kong would be added in the second and overseas tours in the third, chief operating officer Alfred Kam Tze-ming said. Sales rose 21.5 per cent in the year to March 31 to HK$204.8 million after the agency added 10 new shops. Incentive income from suppliers grew 56 per cent year-on-year to HK$12.5 million in the year to March 31. Net profit edged up only 3.1 per cent to HK$31.11 million, as higher salaries and rents and expenses related to its listing application offset higher revenues. In the year to March 31 last year, sales grew 1 per cent to HK$168.54 million and net profit slid 3.9 per cent to HK$30.16 million. No profit forecast was made. Some HK$141 million of dividends were declared in the three years to March 31, equivalent to 152 per cent of net profit in the period. The prospectus gave no indication of its future dividend payout ratio.