Hotels group InterContinental Hotels saw solid revenue per available room (RevPAR) growth in the first quarter of 2012, helped by an increase in rates and occupancy, as well as strong performances in the Americas and China.
The Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn owner said that total revenue rose 3% from $396m to $409m in the three months to March 31st, up 4% at constant exchange rates (CERs).
Meanwhile, Group RevPAR grew by 7.0%, driven by strong growth in the Americas (up 7.7%) and Greater China (11.9%). Increases in Europe and Asia, Middle East and Africa (AMEA) were more subdued (up 2.6% and 6.9%, respectively).
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Global rates increased by 3.3% on average while occupancy grew by 2.1 percentage points. Meanwhile, the total system size of 661,159 rooms was 1% higher year-on-year.
"We have delivered strong performance in the quarter with global revenue per available room up 7% and continued outperformance in the US and Greater China. The strength of our brands and systems, together with our scale and the close working relationships we have with our hotel owners, continue to underpin our success," said Chief Executive Richard Solomons.
RevPAR growth eased to 6.1% in April despite rate growth picking up to 4.2%. RevPAR growth picked up in both Europe and AMEA but fell slowed in the Americas and China.
Pre-tax profit improved from $94m to $106m in the first quarter, helped by higher revenue and falling administrative expenses.
"The global economic backdrop, particularly in Europe, is still challenging, but the considerable strengths of our business including our resilient model and strong balance sheet give us confidence that we will continue to drive high quality growth," Solomons said.
Gross capital expenditure was just $21m in the first quarter, compared with the full-year guidance of $150m of maintenance and $100-200m of growth capital expenditure.
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