InterContinental Hotels Group trading improved significantly during H1 2021

hotel

InterContinental Hotels Group plc (LON:IHG) has announced its half year results to 30 June 2021.

● Significant improvement in demand over the course of H1, resulting in RevPAR (43)% vs 2019 and +20% vs 2020

● Recovery most advanced in Greater China with Q2 RevPAR (16)% vs 2019; continued improvement in the Americas to (26)%; EMEAA still most challenged at (65)%. Regional performance reflects variations in both vaccine rollout progress and travel restrictions

● Group Q2 RevPAR (36)% vs 2019, reflecting occupancy 19%pts lower and rate sustained at 87% of 2019 levels; Q2 occupancy of 53% improved through the quarter; June 69% in the US; 54% Greater China; and 40% EMEAA

● Operating profit from reportable segments of $188m, +262% vs 2020, (down 54% vs 2019); reported operating profit of $138m, after System Fund result of $(46)m and operating exceptionals of $(4)m

● Cost reductions in the fee business this year of ~$75m vs 2019 on track, and sustainable whilst still investing for growth; majority of these savings delivered in H1; higher investment for growth expected in H2

● Strong cash conversion resulting in adjusted free cash flow1 of $147m (2020: outflow of $66m), and net cash from operating activities of $173m (2020: outflow of $14m)

● Gross system growth of +5.1% YOY; after removals, including SVC portfolio termination in Q4 2020 and Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza review in H1 2021, net system size growth +0.1% YOY

● Opened 17.4k rooms (132 hotels) in H1, +46% vs 2020; global estate now at 884k rooms (5,994 hotels)

● Signed 32.6k rooms (203 hotels) in H1, +24% vs 2020; global pipeline now at 274k rooms (1,805 hotels)

● New collection brand launching to capture the increasing opportunities of conversions and further strengthen our position in Luxury & Lifestyle

Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer, IHG Hotels & Resorts, said:

“Trading improved significantly during the first half of 2021, with travel demand returning strongly as vaccines roll out, restrictions ease, and economic activity rebuilds. It has been great to see our teams welcome more and more guests back into our hotels, with domestic leisure bookings leading the way, particularly in the US and China. Essential business travel was a key element of our resilience throughout the pandemic, and we are now seeing more group activity and corporate bookings start to come back. These trends and the momentum in the business have continued in recent weeks, including in EMEAA where a lifting of travel restrictions in some markets is also now driving improvements in demand. With occupancy and rate continuing to improve, nearly 50% of our hotels achieved RevPAR above 2019 levels in July.

As more development activity returns to the industry, the strength of IHG’s brand portfolio and the power of our scale, systems and platforms for owners is being clearly recognised. We opened 132 hotels in the half and signed 203, both sizeable increases on last year. Our focus on the quality of our estate remains extremely high, and we’re making rapid progress with the review of our Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza portfolios to ensure the consistency of these leading brands and that they are well positioned for future growth. With the actions we are taking, and a pipeline that represents more than 30% of our current system size, we expect to return quickly to an industry-leading level of net rooms growth.

We’re also excited to announce that we’ll soon be launching a new Luxury & Lifestyle collection brand to provide further choice for guests and owners. Over the last four years we’ve added five new brands to create a portfolio of 16, each targeting a specific segment and enhancing our market reach. The addition of a collection brand will provide high quality independent hotels access to the many benefits of IHG’s system, whilst retaining a property’s distinctive identity. There are currently around 1.5 million independently run rooms in the market segments we are targeting, and we expect the collection to attract more than 100 hotels within 10 years.

The actions we have taken during the last 18 months position us well to exceed our pre-pandemic level of growth and profitability. While there is a risk of trading volatility in the balance of the year, and discretionary business trips, group bookings and international travel will take time to fully recover, we are confident in the strength of IHG’s future prospects.”

Presentation for analysts and shareholders:

A conference call and webcast presented by Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer, and Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson, Chief Financial Officer and Group Head of Strategy, will commence at 9:30am (London time) on 10 August 2021 and can be accessed at www.ihgplc.com/en/investors/results-and-presentations or directly on https://www.investis-live.com/ihg/60ec433c2527a91600459438/trgh

For analysts and shareholders wishing to ask questions, please use the dial-in details below which will have a Q&A facility:

UK local:0203 936 2999
UK:0800 640 6441
US:+1 855 979 6654
All other locations:+44 203 936 2999
Passcode:27 88 30

An archived webcast of the presentation is expected to be available later on the day of the results and will remain on it for the foreseeable future, accessed at www.ihgplc.com/en/investors/results-and-presentations. An audio replay will also be available for 7 days using the following details:

UK:0203 936 3001
All other locations:+44 203 936 3001
Passcode:82 83 10

Website:

The full release and supplementary data will be available on the InterContinental Hotels Group website from 7:00am (London time) on 10 August. The web address is www.ihgplc.com/en/investors/results-and-presentations.

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