Marriott rides leisure travel demand to offset Delta drag

US Materials 3 November 2021 16:23 (UTC +04:00)

Marriott International Inc on Wednesday topped estimates for third-quarter revenue and profit as a rebound in leisure travel countered a hit from fresh restrictions in Asia caused by the Delta variant, Trend reports with reference to Reuters.

Occupancy rates across its hotels in major regions continued to improve from pandemic lows with vaccinations and the reopening of economies encouraging more people to travel.

"Globally, leisure travel generally remained very strong throughout the quarter, while the Delta variant had the most impact on business transient demand," Chief Executive Officer Anthony Capuano said in a statement.

The owner of brands such as JW Marriott and the Ritz-Carlton said occupancy in its key U.S. & Canada stood at 63.5% in the third quarter, compared to 37% a year earlier. Europe occupancy was at 46.7%, up 26.3% from the same period in 2020.

However, lockdowns and tighter social restrictions in southeast Asia following fresh coronavirus infections took a toll on occupancy in Greater China markets. It was 52.7%, compared to 61.4% a year earlier.

Meanwhile, hotel operators are expected to benefit from a jump in demand as countries either ease or plan to lift COVID-19 travel restrictions for fully vaccinated international visitors.

Although occupancy has recovered from last year's lows, it remains well below the rates seen before the pandemic. Marriott's worldwide occupancy rates stood at 58.2%, about 16.8% below its 2019 occupancy rates.

Excluding items, the company earned 99 cents per share in the third quarter, beating analysts' average estimate of 98 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Revenue rose 75% to $3.95 billion, above Wall Street's expectation of $3.81 billion.