Mauritius hospitality sector has a mixed year in 2013
Most major luxury chains in Mauritius such as Lux Resorts, New Mauritius Hotels – owner of the Beachcomber brand – as well as Constance Hotels and Resorts (CHR), bettered their performance in 2013, while Belle Mare Holdings and Sun Resorts had a worse-off year. (Image: ATP)
The Mauritius hospitality sector had a year of mixed blessings in 2013 on the back of the lukewarm performance of the tourism sector.
Only a slight improvement of 2.9% was witnessed in overall tourist arrivals, even as tourism mainstay Europe showed a 4.5% drop in footfalls to the island economy.
Most major luxury chains in Mauritius such as Lux Resorts, New Mauritius Hotels – owner of the Beachcomber brand – as well as Constance Hotels and Resorts (CHR), bettered their performance in 2013, with the first two declaring higher profitability, even as CHR narrowed it losses.
On the other hand, according to results declared so far, Belle Mare Holdings and Sun Resorts had a worse-off year in 2013, with the former showing a drop in profitability, even as the latter swung into the red in 2013, compared to a healthy profit in 2012.
Declaring results on the stock exchange yesterday, Belle Mare Holdings notched up pretax profits of Rs 44.8 million for the year ended December 31, 2013, representing a 71.3% dip over the corresponding period of 2012.
However, it may be noted that, of the Rs 155.7 million profits earned by the group in 2012, a major component of profits realized on investment was present to the tune of Rs 123.8 million.
Meanwhile, the group’s turnover for the year ended December 31, 2013 hit Rs 43.3 million, a growth of 4.0% on last year’s.
The group’s total assets increased by Rs 314 million to reach Rs 1.8 billion, compared to Rs 1.5 billion in the previous year.
The increase of 28.9% in value of investments, which stood at Rs 1.6 billion in 2013 against Rs 1.2 billion in 2012, reflected the rise in share prices of certain of their listed and unquoted investments.
The group noted that revenue from investments amounted to Rs 43.3 million for the year 2013, compared with Rs 41.7 million in 2012.
“The group performed well for the year under review,” the management noted.
The other major hospitality player that recently declared its results, CHR showed a five-fold improvement in losses to Rs 31.8 million in 2013.
The group however cautioned that results for 2013 are not strictly comparable with those of 2012 as Constance Halaveli Resort was consolidated as a subsidiary in 2013 following the acquisition of the remaining 65% shareholding.
The management also informed that the resort chain continued to be handicapped by lower-than-expected performance of 5-star property Prince Maurice, on the east of the island, following its renovation in 2012.
Group turnover improved by a whopping 30% to Rs 2.6 billion compared to Rs 2.0 billion in 2012 on the back of the consolidation of Constance Halaveli Resort and increase in revenue generated by other resorts.
Finance costs for 2013 were contained at around Rs 360 million, whilst the share of losses from associates – adversely affected by difficult trading conditions, foreign exchange losses and non-recurring write offs – reached Rs 105 million compared to Rs 61 million in 2012.
After accounting for the above surplus of Rs 176 million and taxation expense of Rs 23 million, compared to the loss of Rs 180 million suffered in 2012, losses for the year 2013 were contained at Rs 31.8 million.
“So far in 2014, the performances of our hotels have improved compared to last year and in all destinations, more significantly in the Maldives and Seychelles,” the management noted, adding that group earnings for the first quarter of 2014 should show improvement over 2013 due to better occupancy rates, higher revenue per available room and tighter cost controls.