Business Irish

Thursday 22 March 2018

Clarion group loses €4.6m as property costs soar to €12.5m

Donal O'Donovan

THE company that operates the Clarion Hotel and Quality Hotel chains in Ireland lost €4.6m before tax last year, according to accounts filed with the Companies Registration Office.

Despite an operating profit of more than €8m, the loss was recorded after property costs of €12.5m were deducted from its €39m turnover.

Accounts filed in September by Kasterlee said that loans backing a number of hotels the company operates have been transferred to NAMA.

Kasterlee expects further loans to be transferred.

Despite loans backing its hotels being transferred to NAMA, Kasterlee expects to be retained to manage the hotels even under NAMA control, according to the accounts.

Hotelier Frankie Whelehan founded Choice Hotels Ireland in 1998 and it owns the bulk of the Kasterlee portfolio.

It operates the Clarion and Quality chains in the Republic and a Comfort Inn Hotel in Belfast.

Hotels operated by the chain include properties owned by "NAMA developer" Paddy Kelly.

Earlier this year Kasterlee opened a new Gibson hotel in Dublin's Docklands close to the 02 venue.

As well as hotels in Ireland the company has interests in hotels in the UK and recently took over two hotels in Germany, where it plans further expansion next year.

Accounts filed show that turnover in 2009 was €39m, down from €59m the previous year. Almost €6m of last year's turnover was generated by businesses that have since been exited.

Aggressive cost management saw the cost of sales nearly halved from €28m in 2008 to €17.9m last year.

Among the impairments recorded for 2009 was a €534,000 loss resulting from the liquidation of Carvanna Properties, a group company that operated the former Quality Hotel in Killarney.

The company also made a provision for an onerous lease on the Clarion Suites Limerick of €1.3m.

Irish Independent

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