The steady return of business travel and strong leisure demand is helping InterContinental Hotels perform better than before the Covid-19 pandemic.
Releasing its financial results for the year ending December 31, the hotel giant said demand came back strongly in most of its markets in 2022, so that in the second half of the year both RevPAR and profitability exceeded 2019 levels.
“Looking to 2023, while there are economic uncertainties, we expect continued strong leisure demand in many markets, alongside further return of business and group travel and the ongoing reopening of China,” said Chief Executive Keith Barr.
IHG reported a 50% rise in annual pre-tax profit to $540 million, with revenue increasing by 34% to $3.9 billion.
Adjusted earnings (EBITDA) were up by 42% to $896 million.
Commenting on the results, Julie Palmer, Partner at corporate restructuring firm Begbies Traynor, said: “The travel industry’s bounce back continues with InterContinental Hotels performing better than pre-pandemic levels when there were no Covid restrictions.
“By the end of the year, the key measure for hotels, revenue per available room, was above 2019 levels in key markets, and InterContinental is hoping to benefit from the long-awaited reopening of China.
“There’s confidence despite an uncertain global economic outlook this morning. InterContinental says travel is low down the list of things cash-strapped consumers cut, and business travel is steadily returning, with hybrid working arrangements delivering a further boost.
“With almost a million rooms across 6,000 hotels either directly owned or franchised under InterContinental’s various brands, and plans to add a further 1,800 properties, management are betting big on this recovery continuing.”