May 05, 2014 00:00 By Somluck Srimalee The Nation 4,392 Viewed
Property and hotel businesses hit by political turbulence
Ital-Thai Group has cut its revenue forecast this year from Bt13 billion to Bt12 billion after property and hospitality businesses showed signs of faltering due to the country’s marathon political conflicts.
CEO Yuthachai Charanachitta said in an interview with The Nation last week that the forecast is maintained at nearly last year’s level with Bt4 billion from trading, Bt4 billion from the engineering system service and Bt4 billion from hospitality and property.
But with political turmoil erupting late last year and dragging on till now, tourists have kept away from Bangkok and the provinces, and this has hurt its hotel business.
Occupancy at the group’s hotels in Bangkok was only 50 per cent last quarter, while its hotels upcountry reached about 80 per cent.
Ital-Thai’s “Amari” hotels are managed by its subsidiary Onyx Hospitality Group.
If the political conflict is prolonged, hotels will continue to face tight room sales till the end of this year.
The company has retained its staff but reduced working hours to save operating costs while business is down.
Demand for luxury homes in Phuket has also dropped, so residential sales on the resort island are about 30 per cent short of target. This has hit its property business this year.
The group has lowered its sights for property revenue by 20 per cent from Bt1.2 billion last year to Bt1 billion this year.
Amari Estate Co is the property arm of Ital-Thai and the developer of residential projects in Phuket and Hua Hin with a focus on luxury residences priced over Bt9 million a unit.
Following the hazier business outlook, the group has to delay investment till next year, especially in property projects, he said.