London may have dragged down InterContinental Hotels Group’s UK first-half performance, but it is just a blip, the owner of the Crowne Plaza chain insisted on Tuesday, as it cheered international growth.
The FTSE 100 firm behind more than 5400 hotels, revealed revenue per room dropped 1.4% in the capital in the six months to June. The figure for Britain was down 0.2%.
Finance chief Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson said shareholders should not be worried, and predicted a better second half.
He added: “The reason for the fall is because we were never going to match the 9% London growth seen in the first half of 2017. That period benefited from a massive influx of tourists in town, attracted by the weaker pound. The market has now returned to more normal levels.”
His comments came as IHG posted a 3.7% rise in group revenue per room. Total revenues climbed 7.6% to $2.1 billion (£1.6 billion).
The hotels operator, led by Keith Barr, pointed to strong growth in China, and improved performances in the US and continental Europe.
It saw pre-tax profits decrease to $303 million from $357 million, partly due to exceptional costs.
It opened 22,000 new rooms during the period. Its growth plan includes rolling out its lower-priced US brand “avid” globally, and buying luxury boutiques operators.
The company raised its interim dividend by 10% to 36.3 cents.
Shares in IHG fell 100p to 4649p.