The Hospitality Sector
Avid Partners has a number of clients operating in the hotel and accommodation areas and have been working with these businesses to both streamline and grow their operations as greater opportunities present themselves. Avid Partners have helped our hotel clients cut controllable costs and keep their businesses streamlined so that they are in a position to offer stimulus to attract guests to their hotel. Waste and overruns have been cut out of their business and costs are also monitored closely to ensure that the business isn’t overpaying in any key area. We also have clients marketing their products and services directly to the hospitality sector including furnishings companies, trade providers, fit out organisations, catering and events companies.
Hotels must also remain price competitive and market their products in an effective way to the target audiences that will likely be most receptive to immediate business (established overseas markets and new/emerging foreign visitors). Continued investment in product infrastructure will also be important as customers move up the value chain, as well as finding the unique balance between hotel prices and operating costs.
The industry still faces a number of challenges to growth including:
- Static domestic demand for rooms and guesthouses
- Despite the upturn in 2012 only a 1% increase in occupancy was reported
- Room rates are still heavily discounted for off peak times
- Rural hotels continue to find the operating market difficult through lack of domestic tourists and a difficulty in attracting overseas visitors outside of the traditional tourist hubs
- Sluggishness in key overseas tourism markets (UK, US)
- Legacy debt and over supply issues
- NAMA operated hotels still keeping rates artificially low in certain local markets
- A three speed system appears to be developing with hotels in Dublin City Centre doing very well, the tourist hubs doing well (Killarney, Galway, Cork) with the rural areas lagging behind the more established markets
The hospitality sector has added some 23,000 jobs since 2011. The hotel sector in Ireland alone currently supports 54,000 jobs. The sector has recovered well since the 2008 downturn mainly attributed to reduced VAT rates, the Gathering 2013 and a general increase in Foreign Visitors. According to the Irish Hotel Federation the overall occupancy rate for 2013 was 61% with a regional variance of up to 24% (Dublin 70% – East & Midlands 46%).
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