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EXCLUSIVE: No sale: it’s business as usual for Mantra Group

Mantra's Ambassador, Pat Rafter

Mantra Group’s CEO, Bob East, has confirmed the company will maintain its current ownership and shareholder structure, despite some significant offers received to purchase the business.

In an exclusive statement issued to HM, East said given the company’s financial success to date and forecasts for continued growth, the decision has been made by the Company’s Board of Directors to further grow and develop the business by maintaining the current shareholders and leadership team, under which the company has prospered to date. 

He said the business posted exceptional financial results for FY12 that saw a 9% increase in profits to reach AUD$60.6 million, further establishing it as a leader in the Australian accommodation sector. 

East said the interest shown by key industry parties and private equity consortiums since a potential sale was tabled earlier this year, was particularly encouraging in this current economic climate and further demonstrates the value placed on the business and its growth potential.

“A number of considerations were made by the Board on some extremely competitive offers, but to do justice to a profitable asset like Mantra Group, we set a very high benchmark,” he said.

East said the Group has forecast to achieve EBITDA of $65million which is 8.1% increase on last financial year and are currently on track to be above budget for the first quarter.

He said he is keen to see the business continue to succeed with every confidence the current structure would facilitate further expansion and development.

“The Executive team and staff across the Group have continued with a ‘business as usual’ approach throughout this process and maintained momentum across the network – this approach will now pay dividends as we get on with servicing our guests and continuing to improve and grow our product to round out another successful year,” East said.

In addition to its financial success, Mantra Group also saw further expansion of its Peppers Retreats and Resorts network, increasing the brand footprint in Australia and New Zealand. 

Following the addition of five properties – including Peppers Cradle Mountain Lodge and Peppers Rundells Lodge in Mt Hotham; and in New Zealand, Peppers Parehua Martinborough, Peppers Awaroa Lodge and mostly recently Peppers Carrington Resort in the Bay of Islands – the Peppers network now numbers 30 properties across Australia and New Zealand with further expansion schedule for the next 12 months.

East said the group is also well placed to capitalise on the strengthening corporate market with a CBD network of 21 Mantra properties in all capital cities and will continue to achieve occupancy uplift as result of the mining and resources boom in Western Australia, Queensland and the Northern Territory.

He said the leisure market is also experiencing exceptional growth with the combination of increased domestic flight routes and growing inbound business from China into Queensland, where the Group is the largest accommodation provider with over 40 properties across the State.

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