Hilton has welcomed a “solid” first quarter of trading as travel continues to rebound, with RevPAR rocketing 80.5% compared to the same period in 2021. This was down by only 17% against the same period in 2019, the year before the pandemic hit.
It comes as the hotel chain reported a net income of $211m (£169m) and earnings of $448m (£359m) for the quarter ended 31 March, 2022. This was against a loss of $109m (£87m) and $198m (£158m), respectively, for the same period in 2021.
Over the period, the group approved 22,200 new rooms for development, bringing Hilton’s development pipeline to more than 410,000 rooms as of 31 March 31, 2022. It also added 13,200 rooms to its system in the first quarter, contributing to 7,800 net additional rooms during the period, marking a 5% growth against last year.
In light of its results, the group resumed share repurchases in March 2022, and repurchased 907,000 shares of Hilton common stock for $130m (£104m) in the first quarter, and 1.8 million shares for $265m (£212m) through April.
Looking ahead, full-year RevPAR is expected to increase between 32% and 38%against last year, and full-year net income is projected to be between $1.01bn (£808m) and $1.07bn (£856m), while adjusted EBITDA is projected to be between $2.25bn (£1.8bn) and $2.35bn (£1.88bn).
Christopher J. Nassetta, president and CEO of Hilton, said: “We are happy to report solid first quarter results, with all segments driving better than expected top line performance in March. Our results in the quarter, coupled with our confidence in continued recovery throughout the year, enabled us to begin returning capital to shareholders earlier than we had anticipated.
“In March, we resumed our share repurchase program and, in the second quarter, we declared a quarterly cash dividend. Our team members worked hard to effectively navigate the pandemic and position the Company for the future, and we are excited for the growth opportunities that lie ahead.”