By Conor Kane
A leading hotel group which has just reported a turnover increase of 6% for last year has warned of the effects the "prolonged period of uncertainty" surrounding Brexit will have on the industry.
The Griffin Hotel Group, responsible for the Ferrycarrig Hotel, Monart Destination Spa and Hotel Kilkenny, saw profits jump by 20% in 2017, from the previous year, as well as recording a turnover increase of 6% in its latest accounts due to be submitted this week.
The group employed an average of 461 employees throughout 2017, with 78% of its turnover, about €18 million, returned to the local economy through staff wages and direct supplier within Wexford and Kilkenny.
According to the Griffin Hotel Group, the improved turnover last year has allowed it to mount a "significant investment programme" across the group in environmental and energy-efficient projects.
However, CEO and director Michael Griffin said that while they also re-invested in the three properties to remain at the high end of the four and five-star markets, "it would be prudent to note a significant tone of caution for 2018-2019 due to the prolonged period of uncertainty facing our sector due to Brexit and its impact both on inbound UK visitors and the domestic economy".
The company's performance in 2017 over 2016, when taking into account exceptional items recorded in 2016, resulted in a turnover of €24.2 million, 6% up on 2016, with an operating profit of €3.6 million which represents a 20% increase on 2016.
Michael Griffin manages the business daily along with his brother and fellow director Liam Anthony Griffin and they are the third generation of the Griffin family in the hotel business.
“The continued growth across our group is welcomed and underlines the steady trend of our recovery," Michael Griffin said.