FHT reports 1.1% dip in Q1 payout

Better performances in all its country portfolios except Britain helped Frasers Hospitality Trust (FHT) boost its first-quarter numbers, although unit holders will pick up a smidgeon less than last year.

Gross revenue was up 4.8 per cent year-on-year to $41.45 million for the three months to Dec 31, while net property income climbed 3.1 per cent to $31.45 million.

But an adjustment in its stapled security base means a lower payout for investors in the firm, which comprises Frasers Hospitality Real Estate Investment Trust and Frasers Hospitality Business Trust.

The number of stapled securities entitled to distribution rose 1.1 per cent to 1.86 billion compared with the same quarter a year earlier. That meant distribution per stapled security fell 1.1 per cent to 1.3107 cents.

Distribution income was nearly flat at $24.45 million despite a reduced contribution from Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour.

  • AT A GLANCE 

  • GROSS REVENUE: 
    $41.5 million (+4.8%)

    NET PROPERTY INCOME: 
    $31.5 million (+3.1%)

    DISTRIBUTION PER UNIT: 
    1.3107 cents (-1.1%)

The hotel, now known as Novotel Sydney Darling Square, is undergoing renovations that are on track to finish by the end of this month.

Britain proved a drag in the quarter with gross operating revenue down 1.1 per cent, while gross operating profit slid 4 per cent on the back of weaker room revenue and increased staff costs.

Australia, which accounted for about 40 per cent of net property income, chalked up a 3.7 per cent increase in gross operating revenue and a 4.9 per cent bump in gross operating profit, due largely to Novotel Melbourne on Collins.

Singapore saw modest increases as well, but average daily rates fell 2 per cent while revenue per available room was lower by 1 per cent.

Ms Eu Chin Fen, chief executive of the manager, said: "With our balance sheet strength and low gearing at 33 per cent, we remain well positioned to pursue accretive acquisitions for growth and asset enhancement initiatives to unlock value for (investors)."

FHT units closed up 0.5 cent to 82.5 cents yesterday.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 25, 2018, with the headline 'FHT reports 1.1% dip in Q1 payout'. Print Edition | Subscribe