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Today’s news in brief – 23/5/24

Travelodge experienced a 3.5% revenue increase, reaching £205.5m for Q1 2024, driven by diverse leisure and business guest demand. Despite a 1.0% rise in RevPAR to £46.45, the average room rate dropped by 0.9% to £56.77. Energy hedging benefits in Q1 2023 led to a slight year-on-year EBITDA decrease from £13m to £11.4m. Including Travelodge PropCo Group’s hotel acquisitions, underlying EBITDA was £12.9m. Early Q2 trading faced challenges from bank holidays, weather, and fewer events, but forward bookings are strong for major events like the British Grand Prix and Edinburgh Festival. The company anticipates a 5% hotel cost inflation for 2024, with slight EBITDA margin reductions due to inflationary pressures and investments in growth and quality. CEO Jo Boydell emphasised the robust Q1 performance, strategic investments, and positive trading patterns, highlighting Travelodge’s well-positioned growth prospects.

Hyatt reported an adjusted EBITDA of $252m (£198m) for Q1 2024, down from $268m (£210.5m) in the previous year. The company’s RevPAR increased by 5.5%, and net room growth was 5.5%, with a pipeline of 129,000 rooms. Full-year net income is projected between $1.15bn (£900m) and $1.2bn (£940m), and adjusted EBITDA between $1.15bn (£900m) and $1.19bn (£930m), consistent with earlier forecasts. CEO Mark S. Hoplamazian highlighted record gross fee revenue of $262m (£208m), a 10% increase in the pipeline, and significant growth in the World of Hyatt membership to 46 million. The company’s strategy focuses on expanding its asset-light earnings mix and reducing owned real estate.

The Cornwall Hotel Collection acquired The Falmouth Hotel, enhancing its portfolio that includes The Greenbank in Falmouth and The Alverton in Truro. This acquisition marks a significant milestone, returning the hotel to local ownership after nearly two decades. Chairman Roger French emphasised the responsibility of stewarding such an iconic establishment, while managing director Ben Young underscored plans to restore and enhance the hotel to reflect Falmouth’s vibrant spirit and heritage. Young’s personal ties to the hotel and commitment to its improvement aim to benefit the town, employees, and stakeholders.

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Clermont Hotel Group was named one of the UK’s Best Workplaces for Development by Great Place To Work in 2024. Known for its commitment to training and development, the group relaunched The Academy, a central hub for over 1,600 employees across its 17 hotels and central office. Amanda Hall, head of talent and organisational development, highlighted the importance of tailored training to attract and retain talent in the hospitality industry. Benedict Gautrey, MD of Great Place To Work UK, emphasised that development opportunities enhance employee value, productivity, and retention. The recognition reflects Clermont’s culture of growth, collaboration, and respect.

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