MeriStar Hotels & Resorts (NYSE: MMH), the nation`s largest independent hotel management company, today announced results for the first quarter ended March 31, 2000.
Earnings rose to $2.2 million for the 2000 first quarter, or $0.07 per share on a diluted basis, $0.01 above consensus analyst expectations. Revenues for the period increased 4.5 percent to $340.5 million, and earnings before interest expense, income taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) for the quarter rose 14 percent to $6.6 million.
Same-store average daily rate (ADR) for full-service, leased hotels increased 4.3 percent to $112.44, while occupancy declined 0.8 percent to 70.5 percent. RevPAR for these hotels improved 3.4 percent to $79.31.
For all leased hotels, RevPAR increased 3.0 percent to $73.99, ADR rose 4.2 percent to $105.58 and occupancy declined 1.1 percent to 70.1 percent.
``Our operating team produced solid first quarter results despite weakness in early January related to millennium travel concerns,`` said Paul W. Whetsell, chairman and chief executive officer. ``Year-to-date, we have added six contracts to our management portfolio, including one through our joint venture, MeriStar Investment Partners. In addition, we rebranded the Palmas del Mar in Puerto Rico, one of the Caribbean`s premier golf destinations, to our Doral flag. Our recently announced investment in the STS Hotel Net Travel Portal (www.hotelnet.com) positions the company to benefit economically from technology growth in our industry.``
Whetsell pointed out that the company strengthened its capital structure during the quarter with the placement of a new $100 million credit facility. ``Our debt structure remains conservative at less than 2.5 times total debt to EBITDA,`` he noted.
``We are expanding our hospitality management base to include corporate housing with an agreement to purchase BridgeStreet Accommodations, which has approximately 3,700 corporate housing units in 26 cities in the U.S., Canada and the United Kingdom,`` said David E. McCaslin, MeriStar Hotels & Resorts president. ``We expect to close the transaction by the end of the second quarter.``
MeriStar Hotels & Resorts operates 235 hospitality and leisure properties with more than 46,000 rooms and 10 golf courses in 34 states, the District of Columbia, Canada, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For more information, visit the company`s web site: www.meristar.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements about MeriStar Hotels & Resorts, Inc., including those statements regarding future operating results and the timing and composition of revenues, among others. Except for historical information, the matters discussed in this press release are forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially, including the following: the ability of the company to successfully implement its acquisition strategy and operating strategy; the company`s ability to manage rapid expansion; changes in economic cycles; competition from other hospitality companies; and changes in the laws and government regulations applicable to the company.