Easter Sunday aftermath drives Sri Lanka’s John Keells Hotels into the red in Sep

ECONOMYNEXT- John Keells Hotels Plc (KHL), the Sri Lankan and Maldivian resort operator of the John Keells Group, said it posted 470 million rupees in net losses in the September quarter, down from a 3 million rupee net loss a year earlier.

The firm, which faced a fall in tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka due to the Easter Sunday bombings, in its interim financials released after market close on Thursday, said that the loss per share was 32 cents for the September quarter.

The KHL share closed trading at 10.50 rupees on Thursday, up 1.60 rupees, contributing most to the market gain. The loss per share for the first 6 months of the 2019/20 financial year were 62 cents.

KHL’s Cinnamon Dhonveli Maldives was partially closed for refurbishment in May, while Cinnamon Bentota Beach Hotel which was closed for redevelopment in 2017 will re-open in December.

The firm also began managing a new hotel, Cinnamon Velifushi Maldives, in October 2019.

Revenue for the September quarter fell 27 percent to 1.7 billion rupees, while cost of sales grew 11 percent to 712.6 million rupees and gross profits fell 35 percent to 1 billion rupees.

Finance expenses grew 87 percent to 109.6 million rupees.

Long-term borrowings grew to 19.8 billion rupees at end-September, from 3.2 billion rupees at end-March.

With KHL adopting the SLFRS 16 accounting standard on leases, hotels and properties which were leased, typically for 10-35 years, are accounted in the balance sheet as borrowings. The right of use assets for the leases were 25.9 billion rupees.

Short-term borrowings grew to 1.9 billion by end-September from 979.4 million rupees six months earlier.

The Norges fund, the world’s largest sovereign fund, increased its shareholding in KHL to 1.88 percent in September from 1.47 percent 3 months earlier.

R. S. Captain, a part of the Captain family which controls the highest number of shares in the parent John Keells Holdings Plc, bought 0.74 percent KHL shares during the quarter, entering into the shareholder list.

(Colombo/Oct24/2019)

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