Whitbread, the renowned hotel-and-restaurant company, has announced a significant increase in pretax profit for the first half of fiscal year 2024. This growth can be attributed to higher occupancy levels and a surge in food & beverage sales. In addition, Whitbread has unveiled plans for a substantial buyback program worth £300 million ($365.5 million).
Impressive Financial Performance
During the six months ending on September 1, pretax profit reached an impressive £395.1 million, compared to £307.4 million for the same period the previous year. This remarkable uptick in profitability demonstrates Whitbread’s continued success in the market.
When considering adjusted pretax profit, which disregards exceptional and one-off items, the company managed to achieve £391.4 million. This is a significant improvement from the previous year’s figure of £271.9 million.
Whitbread experienced a notable increase in revenue, reaching £1.57 billion compared to £1.35 billion in the preceding year. Although falling slightly short of the consensus estimated by three analysts at £1.59 billion, this growth is certainly noteworthy.
Furthermore, Whitbread’s board of directors has declared an interim dividend of 34.1 pence per share, representing an increase from the previous year’s interim dividend of 24.4 pence.
Strong Performance of Premier Inn
As the proud owner of the budget-friendly Premier Inn hotel chain, Whitbread saw a substantial 15% growth in total U.K. accommodation sales for the first half of the fiscal year.
Increased Capital Expenditure
Whitbread has raised its gross capital expenditure guidance for the year, increasing the range from £400 million to £450 million to a revised range of £500 million to £550 million. The company expects to partly fund this increase through the anticipated disposal proceeds from property transactions, which are estimated to fall between £50 million and £100 million.
With such promising financial results and an optimistic outlook, Whitbread is solidifying its position as a leading player in the hotel and restaurant industry.