Jurys to open in Nottingham next year despite profits fall


Jurys Doyle is to open a 250-bedroom Jurys Inn in Nottingham late next year, the Irish hotel chain said today. News of the continued expansion came despite full-year results showing a decline in profits.

The chain is to press on with its plans, said chief executive Pat McCann, and is building Jury Inns on Parnell Street in Dublin, at London’s Heathrow airport and in Southampton, with a four-star Jurys Hotel in Boston, USA, nearing completion.

During 2003 Jurys Inns opened in Newcastle and Glasgow and a Jurys Inn in Leeds is due to open tomorrow, with another in Chelsea, west London, in a few months’ time.

Much like the rest of the hotel industry, the chain said it was badly affected last year by the fall-out from the war in Iraq, the continued terror threat, global economic conditions and impact of the Sars epidemic.

Turnover for the year to 31 December came in at €253.8m (£169.7m), compared with €268.1m (£179.2m) in 2002. Operating profit, before the profit on disposal of hotels, was €56m (£37.4m), against €72.6m (£48.5m) a year earlierPre-tax profit amounted to €45.8m (£30.6m), down from €52.9m (£35.4m).

Currency fluctuations also caused problems. The appreciation of the euro against sterling and the US dollar hit sales and profits, reducing turnover by €16.58m (£11.1m) – without this effect it would have reported 1% turnover growth.

The euro’s strength also reduced operating profits by €5.2m (£3.5m), or 7%.Occupancy levels across the group were down by less than 1% compared with 2002, said McCann.

‘Our hotels as a whole in the UK and the United States reported small increases in their overall achieved room rates, but these were offset by a small reduction in achieved room rate in our Irish hotels’, he added.

Trading conditions improved in the second half of 2003, particularly in the UK and US and within the Jurys Inn division in Ireland and the UK, he said, and this had continued into 2004.

‘Therefore we are cautiously optimistic about the business outlook for the group in terms of modest pre-tax profit growth in 2004’, he said.

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