On 18 April 2023, International Hotel Investments plc published its Annual Report and Financial Statements for the year ended 31 December 2022.
Revenue amounted to €238.2 which represents a sharp uplift of 84.3% from the level of €129.3 million registered in 2021. However, the revenue generated in 2022 still remains 11.2% below the record of €268.3 million posted in 2019. In this respect, IHI explained that the post-pandemic recovery in business reflected the higher demand for the Group’s hotels, albeit at different levels, led by a notable recovery in the performance of the Corinthia Hotel London.
On the expenditure side, operating costs increased by 61.7% to €215.7 million (2021: €133.4 million) as IHI was impacted by several inflationary pressures including the increase in costs of wages, fuel, and a wide variety of goods. IHI explained that energy costs for the Group nearly doubled when compared to the previous year. Excluding depreciation and amortisation, consolidated EBITDA amounted to €51.7 million (which translates into an EBITDA margin of 21.7%) compared to €26.5 million recorded in 2021.
The financial performance of IHI was negatively impacted by a number of non-cash line items, including a fair value movement on investment property of €6.62 million, an impairment of €1.2 million and net changes in fair value of financial assets of €2.93 million. Elsewhere, net finance costs dropped materially to €12.4 million (2021: €25.4) million as IHI benefitted from net exchange differences on borrowings of €15.4 million.
Overall, IHI reported a pre-tax loss of €1.09 million compared to the pre-tax loss of €39.6 million recorded in 2021. After accounting for a tax expense of €1.25 million and the profit of €3.1 million pertaining to minority interests, the net loss for the year attributable to shareholders amounted to €5.44 million compared to the loss of €28.3 million posted in 2021.
The Statement of Financial Position as at 31 December 2022 shows that total assets decreased by 2% to €1.66 billion largely reflecting the lower level of cash balances amounting to €66.2 million (31 December 2021: €102 million). Similarly, total liabilities eased by 1.5% to €844 million mainly due to the lower level of bank borrowings. Shareholders’ funds dropped by 2.9% to €606.9 million which translates into a net asset value per share of €0.9857 (31 December 2021: €1.0147).
In his statement to shareholders, the Chairman provided a number of strategy updates. Mr Pisani explained that IHI intends to sell the Corinthia Hotel in Prague once a right offer is received. Meanwhile, over the next 18 months, Corinthia will open hotels in Brussels (50% owned), Rome, New York, Doha, and Bucharest. Detailed designs for the Corinthia Oasis (formerly known as Hal Ferh) have progressed and IHI is expecting the amended permit by the end of this year. The Group is also in advanced discussions with several entities to conclude three to four new hotel management agreements in the next 12 months, particularly in Saudi Arabia, Oman and possibly Dubai.
IHI will also launch a second hotel brand – Verdi Hotels – which will be positioned to include upscale (four star) hotels which cannot be serviced by the Corinthia brand.
With reference to additional capital raising, Mr Pisani stated that IHI remains committed to proceed with a secondary listing on an international stock exchange and thereby increase the free float to a minimum of 25%. While preparations in this respect are still ongoing, discussions with UDC have reportedly slowed down, in view of the unfavourable current climate across international financial markets.
The Chairman explained that the business strategy is based on a number of pillars, namely: maximising revenue and profitability from IHI’s hotel operations and other businesses, disposing of non-core properties, and putting the Corinthia flag on luxury third-party properties and being ready to have a minority investment in such properties when the right opportunity presents itself.