By Geoff Percival
The Dalata Hotel Group is expected to post a 7% year-on-year increase in first half revenues — to €173m — when it publishes figures for the six months to the end of June next week.
The largest hotel operator in the country — via its Clayton and Maldron brands — is also set to unveil its maiden dividend for shareholders as part of next Tuesday’s interim results presentation.
“Adjusted Ebitda is forecasted to be €49m — 9.7% up year-on-year — driven mainly by a slower growth in rent-related costs. At a diluted adjusted earnings per share level, we are forecasting 16.2c versus 14.9c in the first half of 2017,” said Davy analysts Joseph Quinn and Michael Mitchell in a research note.
“Given the backdrop of strong RevPAR [revenue per available room] growth in Dublin and Ireland during the first half, we believe market expectations will be for Dalata to deliver well in such an environment. Therefore, the risk to our first half forecasts is likely weighted to the upside. In addition to confirming its maiden dividend payment, on balance, we expect management to deliver a positive outlook for the second half,” they said.
Dalata boosted RevPAR in Dublin and regional Ireland by almost 9% in the first half and by 2.6% in the North and the UK, where it is currently expanding and aiming to be the leading player in the three-to-four star market in regional cities. Currently, room revenue from its Dublin hotels contributes 60% of Dalata’s annual revenues.
Dalata’s share price — up by nearly 44% in the past 12 months — was up marginally yesterday.
The group recently said it will start identifying locations in mainland Europe for the next phase of its international growth within the next two years.