Earnings season continues in the hotel sector, highlighted today by reports from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide and Whitbread plc.
Starwood: First-quarter systemwide revenue per available room for same-store properties grew by 6.4% at Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.
“Going into the year, we said that 2012 was more likely to surprise on the upside,” CEO Frits van Paasschen said in a news release. “So far, that is playing out. More importantly, we remain very bullish on the long-term. Seemingly unstoppable demographic and economic trends are fueling global growth in demand for high end travel. Rising wealth around the world and globally interconnected businesses will lead to ever more travel.”
Starwood opened 18 hotels representing approximately 4,500 rooms during the quarter. Worldwide, the company has 1,103 properties in its portfolio.
Whitbread: The company said sales from its Premier Inn brand grew by 8.3% during the quarter and that RevPAR out-performed its competitive set.
Whitbread said it has a committed pipeline of 10,500 rooms and has a portfolio of 47,429 rooms in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The company has opened a record 4,055 new build rooms in the U.K.
“Our focus on building strong brands and meeting the needs of our customers has enabled us to perform well in tough market conditions giving us the confidence to continue to expand in line with our ambitious growth plans,” Chairman Anthony Habgood said.
By a 54-45 vote Wednesday, the U.S. Senate failed to block a measure that shortens the union election process at companies.
The measure would shorten the election period to 10 days, from the current six-week timeframe.
“The ambush rule violates original congressional intent when the National Labor Relations Act was first passed,” the American Hotel & Lodging Association said in a statement. “That intent was articulated again … during the debate of the 1959 amendments to the National Labor Relations Act, then-Senator John F. Kennedy opposed an amendment that failed to provide ‘at least 30 days in which both parties can present their viewpoints’ noting, ‘there should be at least a 30-day interval between the request for an election and the holding of the election.’”
The rule is scheduled to go into effect 30 April.
Pushed back by the global downturn, the Caribbean region’s hotel sector has the potential to bounce back, reports HotelNewsNow.com’s Stephanie Wharton.
The Caribbean saw two successive years of record highs in 2010 and 2011 in terms of tourism growth, Adam Sacks, president of Tourism Economics, said during the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Investment Conference. “We expect continued growth in the range of 3% over the next few years,” he said. The historical average is 3.7% per annum.
In the first quarter of 2012, there were 2,125 hotels in the Caribbean pipeline representing 231,278 rooms, according to data presented by Amanda Hite, president of STR, parent company of HotelNewsNow.com.
“We’re at a point now where we have much higher demand growth, very low supply growth, which we think puts hotels at a great position to drive revenue,” Hite said.
An increase in the number of travelers expected to visit Singapore is boosting the share price of newly listed Global Premium Hotels Limited, according to Bloomberg.
In its first day as a listed company on the Singapore exchange, shares rose 9.6%.
“We expect the demand for hotel rooms to remain strong in the coming years on the back of a heavy influx of tourist arrivals,” Singapore brokerage UOB Kay Hian said in a report ahead of the stock’s debut.
The advance figure for seasonally adjusted unemployment in the U.S. dropped by 1,000 to 388,000 for the week ending 21 April, the Department of Labor said Thursday.
The four-week moving average, however, increased by 6,250 to 381,750.
Compiled by Shawn A. Turner.