Accor Records Operating Loss For First Half Of Year; Hilton Records Quarterly Profit
Europe's biggest hotel group, Accor SA, has said that it is confident of recovery in all geographies with the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines worldwide after the company reported a smaller operating loss for the first half of the year.
"Since May, we have seen a clear recovery. Positive signs including the ramp-up of vaccine rollout and the progressive reopening of borders will continue throughout the summer," Accor chairman and CEO Sebastien Bazin said.
Accor, which operates 5,199 hotels in 110 countries, posted a narrower first-half earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) loss of €120 million, compared with a loss of €227 million a year earlier.
Still under pressure from the pandemic fallout, the group's revenue per available room (RevPAR), a key measure for a hotel's top-line performance, slumped 60% compared with the first half of 2019. While situations differed across nations, Europe helped accelerate the recovery momentum as lockdown restrictions eased, the French hotelier said.
The group, which runs high-end chains Sofitel and Pullman, as well as budget ones such as Ibis, added that it saw an improvement of approximately five points in RevPAR every month since April and a similar trend this month.
First-half revenue fell 6% on a like-for-like basis to €824 million.
Accor confirmed the recurring cost savings of €200 million as part of the plan announced last year to mitigate the impact of the pandemic, adding that its EBITDA should benefit from a positive impact of €70 million this year.
The group said that 93% of its hotels are now open, compared with 87% in April.
It refrained, however, from offering a definite outlook for the year, confirming average monthly cash burn at less than €40 million.
Hilton Forecasts Firm Recovery After Swinging To Profit On Travel Demand
Meanwhile, US hotel operator Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc has swung to a quarterly profit on and forecast sustained growth in the second half of the year as leisure travel recovers on easing COVID-19 pandemic-related curbs.
Rising vaccination rates, reopening economies and pent-up travel demand are expected to help hotel operators like Hilton and Marriott International Inc reach occupancy rates similar to pre-pandemic levels in the coming quarters.
"While the pace of recovery varies by region, we expect continued strength in leisure demand and further upticks in business travel to drive continued resurgence in the back half of the year", Chief Executive Officer Christopher Nassetta said.
The company reported a 233.8% jump in comparable RevPAR - a key performance measure for the hotel industry - for the quarter. System-wide occupancy came in at 58.5% in the second-quarter, compared with 22.3% a year ago.
The US hotel industry's occupancy levels in June were the highest recorded since October 2019, reaching 66.1%, according to 2021 from research firm STR.
Occupancy rate for the company's US region rose to 63.7% in the quarter as domestic leisure travel continues to steer the demand recovery.
The company reported net income attributable to Hilton stockholders of $130 million, or 46 cents per share, in the second quarter ended June 30, compared to a net loss of $430 million, or $1.55 per share, a year earlier.
On an adjusted basis, Hilton earned $0.56 per share, beating analysts estimates of $0.40 per share, according to Refinitiv IBES data.
Revenue rose 135.6% to $1.33 billion, but missed estimates of $1.41 billion.