Premier Inn’s London growth leads the way for Whitbread
Tuesday 10 September 2013
The London budget hotel market is enjoying strong growth, according to the latest figures from Premier Inn owner Whitbread today.
The bulk of the 1270 new rooms it has added so far this financial year are in the capital and sales here have grown by a staggering 17.7% in the first six months.
“To be able to add that sort of capacity and still see occupancy in London rise by 2.5% is phenomenal,” said chief executive Andy Harrison. “The return of what I call our normal customers — the UK businessman and the regular international tourist — has more than made up for any boost we received from the Olympics.”
Premier has opened new hotels at Waterloo, Blackfriars and Old Street and, along with next year’s launch of its high-tech “hub” hotels, is on course to increase its London room count from 8,000 to 20,000 over a five-year period.
Whitbread shares dipped 3% on today’s trading update, largely because investors worried over the slowdown at Costa coffee where first-quarter growth of 8% dropped to 3% in the second quarter.
Harrison said this was entirely down to a single month. “July this year was an absolute scorcher whereas July 2012 was very wet and cool,” he said. “When it is that hot people want a cold drink rather than a hot coffee. I think it is far more representative to look at the 24 weeks figure of 5.7% growth.”
He also pointed out that with new store openings — including the 1000th Costa coffee shop outside the UK, which opened in Bangkok last month — Costa’s total sales were up 20.8% at the first half. Its overseas operation now covers 28 countries
Whitbread’s restaurant arm, which includes Beefeater, Brewers Fayre, Table Table and Taybarns, saw sales drift down by 0.2% in the second quarter after a flat first quarter.
Harrison said: “We have barely any restaurants within the M25 and our sales are very much in line with the rest of the industry operating outside the London area.”
Harrison said the group was on track for both its annual and five-year plans.
The shares fell 85p to 3131p.
- 1 The Boy in the Dress, TV review: David Walliams' Boxing Day treat is a celebration of being different
- 2 Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
- 3 Andy Murray takes to Twitter to show off his Christmas jumper
- 4 Margaret Thatcher 'expressed fears of Asian rising' at Anglo-Irish summit in 1984
- 5 Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
PlayStation and Xbox hacked by Lizard Squad
Exclusive: Abusers using spyware apps to monitor partners reaches 'epidemic proportions'
Dublin court rules brain-dead pregnant mother's life support can be switched off
Margaret Thatcher 'expressed fears of Asian rising' at Anglo-Irish summit in 1984
The 'Black Museum': After 150 years, public set to see exhibits from police’s grisly crime museum
British actor Idris Elba cannot star as James Bond because he is black, says shock jock Rush Limbaugh
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Germany anti-Islam protests: 17,000 march on Dresden against 'Islamification of the West'
Ukip member gets into Christmas spirit with Union Flag plea to Santa 'for our country back'
BBC director Danny Cohen: Rising UK antisemitism makes me feel more uncomfortable than ever
Katie Hopkins speaks out on childhood obesity: 'Parents of fat children should be prosecuted for child cruelty'
iJobs Money & Business
Not specified: Selby Jennings: VP/SVP Credit Quant Top tier investment bank i...
Not specified: Selby Jennings: Quantitative Research | Global Equity | New Yor...
Not specified: Selby Jennings: SVP Model Validation This top tiered investment...
Highly Competitive: Selby Jennings: Our client, a leading European Oil trading...