Budget hotel operator Premier Inn has seen £7m of new business from Government over the past six months, as the public sector reins in accommodation costs.
The news came as part of a trading update from parent company Whitbread for the 24 weeks to 19 August 2010, which revealed a 20% rise in business account sales for the hotel chain, driven by the new "age of austerity".
Meanwhile Premier Inn's like-for-like sales climbed 10.7%, compared with the same period the year before. Total sales were up 14.5%, thanks in part to the opening of nine new hotels in the year to date.
Whitbread's group like-for-like sales increased by 7.9%, with total sales up 14%. Revpar also rose 9.8%, compared with an average rise for the budget hotel sector of around 4%.
Outgoing chief executive Alan Parker said he was delighted with the performance. "We are seeing a general pick-up in the market, particularly in the budget hotel sector. And, secondly, we have been far outperforming the market and taking market share from everyone else," he said.
Parker also said he expected Government spending with Premier Inn to increase: "We are very encouraged by the reaction we have had from the new Government and we think they are doing a great job in trying to maintain their travel policies but saving money at the same," he added.
Sales for the 24 weeks to 19 August 2010 (% change vs. previous year)
|Like-for-like sales||Total sales|
|Hotels and restaurants||7.8%||10.1%|
By Neil Gerrard
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