IHG puts digital, direct bookings and loyalty first
Enrolments are significantly up as are points redemptions since the launch of Your Rate and direct booking grew by two points.
Pity the poor management that delivers financial results to the market in the dog days of August. Take InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), which reported a good set of interims with underlying earnings per share up 11% and gave investors a 9% dividend rise. Yet all the market is talking about is the likelihood of a successful bid from China’s Anbang Insurance Group. (Yes, the group that walked away from a $14 billion offer for Starwood.)
IHG certainly does not want to discuss that, and in fact issued terse denials. Nor, in its briefing to analysts on these first-half figures, did it talk of making more mega acquisitions itself. In fact, CEO Richard Solomons says that IHG has enough scale - it does after all own the world largest brand by a factor of two in Holiday Inn, and seems happy with its existing pipeline.
As a group it signed up 35,000 more rooms in the first half taking the pipeline to 222,000 and opened 17,000, “the fastest pace of growth since 2011”. It managed an underlying 5% revenue growth driven by a 2% rise in REVPAR, and achieved a 10% gain in underlying profit in the first half. In the US occupancy was close to peak at 70%.
He was happy to highlight, however, progress on two important areas in IHG's commercial strategy - direct bookings and the loyalty programme.
Read original article