The Eden Leisure Group has registered revenue in excess of €23 million and a consolidated EBITDA of €5.5 million during 2008.
Eden Leisure Group chairman Ian De Cesare explained that the InterContinental continued to be profitable, however revenue and profit for the largest hotel in Malta fell when compared to 2007.
Revenue for the hotel dropped by 11 per cent due to many external factors, including a significant 21 per cent increase in five star rooms, the international economic climate and the reduced value of the sterling, which is having an overall negative outcome on the tourism sector globally and Malta in particular.
During this downturn in tourism, and over winter, InterContinental Malta “took the opportunity to invest in a planned €1 million refurbishment program of 110 club rooms funded through existing cash flows, in anticipation of the upturn in tourism”.
Overall the group’s entertainment business continued to grow, yielding a 7.6 per cent increase in turnover for the year as well as an 8.5 per cent increase in income before fixed charges.
De Cesare said these results were particularly encouraging considering the economic climate in Malta and abroad, and given the challenges being faced by the entertainment segment including the large increases in costs attributable to energy and part-time labour, as well as the continued issue of piracy affecting the cinema industry.
The group’s debt was serviced for the year as it now embarks on a refinancing programme in anticipation of a bond due for redemption in 2010.
De Cesare said that while the prospects for tourism in 2009 are not positive, the group’s entertainment arm is expected to continue to grow. He added that the Eden’s strategy of diversifying its portfolios of strategic business units pays off, particularly during such times of international instability, and has placed the Eden Leisure Group in a strong position for the future.
Eden Leisure group owns 89.7 Bay, Eden Cinemas, Eden Superbowl, Cynergi Health & Fitness Club, Beauty Studio, InterContinental Malta, Bay Arena, Club Numero Uno, Axis Discotheque and MumsClub. The Group is privately owned by De Cesare brothers Ian and Kevin.