InterContinental Hotel Group has toasted a strong start to the year with turnover from continuing operations up 15.9% to £394m in the six months to 30 June (2005: £340m).
However, the company's aggressive disposal programme has seen it sell 175 hotels at a net value of £2.9b, and as it completes its transformation into a franchising and hotel management company, hit short-term profits.
As a result of its shifting business model, pre-tax profit in the half year was 9% lower at £151m (2005: £166m). The company has 22 more hotels worth £900m earmarked for disposal.
InterContinental chief executive Andrew Cosslett said: "This has been a good first half for IHG with excellent trading across each of our three operating regions. For the fist time we now have more than 1,000 new hotels in the development pipeline."
Room count was up by 3,469 rooms to 541,002 in the period, and the company forecasts a total of 10,000 rooms will have been added by the end of 2006.
By Chris Druce