Real estate franchise giant Cendant Corp. today said its quarterly profit declined because of hurricane-related travel disruptions in the United States.

The New York-based owner of the Century 21 real estate brand, among other divisions including travel services, reported third-quarter net income of $514 million, or 44 cents a share, compared with $593 million, or 47 cents a share, a year earlier. Analysts had predicted 46 cents a share.

Revenue totaled $5 billion, an increase of 12 percent over third quarter 2004, reflecting growth in the Company’s core real estate and travel services businesses, the company said.

“Revenue and EBITDA increased due to growth in all of our real estate services businesses,” the company said in a press release. Cendant’s real estate services consist of real estate franchise brands, brokerage operations, relocation services and settlement services.

Fourth-quarter earnings from core operations, before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, excluding restructuring charges, are expected to rise 14 percent from a year earlier, below its earlier forecast of 25 percent, Cendant said.

Revenue in the real estate services area was $2.07 billion for the third quarter. Revenue for hospitality services was $404 million. Timeshare resorts revenue was $484 million, and vehicle rental brought in revenue of $1.4 billion. Travel distribution services revenue was $646 million for the third quarter.

In addition to the Century 21 real estate brand, Cendant’s real estate holdings include the Coldwell Banker, Coldwell Banker Commercial, ERA and Sotheby’s International Realty brands.

The company today announced plans to split into four independent, publicly traded companies, one each for its real estate, travel distribution, hospitality and vehicle rental businesses. Cendant said the breakup is aimed at boosting its stock value.

Cendant shares (NYSE: CD) closed at $18.77 a share on Monday.


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