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NH Hoteles first quarter 2002 sales rise

NH<.> Hoteles Group posted EUR 170.43 mn sales in the first three months of 2002, 5% higher…

NH<.> Hoteles Group posted EUR 170.43 mn sales in the first three months of 2002, 5% higher than in the same period last year. Despite the expected negative impact of the economic slowdown and September events on our sector, hotel activities performance has been quite positive with sales increasing 5.5% to EUR 163.56 mn.

This performance is even more remarkable vs. 1Q01, an exceptionally good quarter for the sector and the chain.

NH Group`s hotel revenues were up 5.5% to EUR 163.5 mn

Excellent performance of Comfort (formerly Express) hotels with 9.5% sales growth

Positive trend in RevPar and occupancy

The Company`s performance up to 22 April reflects that impact of economic slowdown has been left behind.

Another factor worth mentioning is that Holy Week (low occupancy for city hotels such as NH) fell in March this year and as such, was recorded in the first quarter, whereas last year, these holidays fell in April and were not included in the first three months.

While 1Q02 sales in European comparable hotels fell 4.6%, data up to the third week of April (which includes Holy Week in 2001 and 2002) reflect a drop of only 1.6%, confirming that the company`s performance continues to improve and quite positive.

This is shown, for example, by the fact that in Spain, comparable hotel activity revenues in the first three month of the year declined 5.3%, to EUR 75.6 mn while, if we include figures up to 22 April, comparable hotel revenue is down only 0.9%. RevPar (average revenue per available room) in Spain fell 5.1% and if also include the first three weeks of April, this figure is only 1.74%.

It`s worth highlighting the performance of NH Comfort hotels, with 9.5% sales growth as a 31 March and 12.43% up to 22 April. NH Comfort hotels posted more than 8% RevPar growth as at the end of March and 11% up to 22 April. The former Krasnapolsky hotels` performance was very positive in the first quarter with sales coming down only 0.93% to EUR 67.7 mn. In like-to-like terms, RevPar in the Benelux and rest of Europe hotels declined 4.8% in 1Q02. The trend in April continues to improve and as at 22 April, RevPar falls only 3.7%.

Hotels in Latin America contributed 9% of the Group`s sales: NH Mexico, not consolidated in 1Q01, posted EUR 12.9 mn in sales in 1Q02 while Mercosur hotels contributed EUR 2 mn in sales.

Sotogrande real estate sales totalled EUR 6.14 mn, 9% lower than in 1Q01. This is explained because most sales are recorded in the last part of the year based on the expected rate of deliveries.

Agreed but un-recorded sales as at 31 March 2002 stand at EUR 56.8 mn. This amount includes agreed sales on the new La Reserva de Sotogrande project, which, just two months after its launch, already total EUR 8.7 mn.

First quarter Casino de Madrid and the Club de Golf Los Retamares revenue rose 6.2% to EUR 3 Mn.

As at 22 April (comparable with last year since both periods include the Easter holidays), occupancy in the Comfort segment increased 4.5%. Occupancy in comparable hotels in Spain fell 2% and in Krasnapolsky 3.4%. Amsterdam`s high occupancy rates, almost 76%, are worth highlighting and clearly confirm the positive performance and the bright prospects for the near future.

For Mercosur hotels, we should distinguish between the performance of comparable hotels-stable average occupancy at 41.1%-despite the delicate situation in Buenos Aires. RevPar in these hotels fell 41.5% on the back of the Argentine peso devaluation. Among the hotels in Buenos Aires, some have recorded lower occupancy, depending on their proximity to the conflictive areas. Occupancy at the Panorama Hotel in Cordoba was quite positive.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.