In preparation for MAR's FQ4 2013 earnings release tonight, we’ve put together the recent pertinent forward looking company commentary.
- Occupancy rates at MAR hotels are nearly at record levels in North America, well ahead of industry averages.
- Transient business benefited from improving mix as high-rated retail business was very strong.
- Looking to shift more and more of that transient business towards higher-rated segments in the hotels
- North America Group revenue pace for the Marriott brand for the fourth quarter is up nearly 7% due to a strong short-term booking.
- 2014 group booking pace for the North American company-operated Marriott-branded hotels is currently up 4% to 5%
- 4% or plus 4.5% for next year is overwhelmingly volume, not rate. Rate is up very modestly, 1-ish% or 0% to 1%.
- Seeing more corporate business such as training meetings and new product launches.
- 60% of 2014 group business is already on the books
- Expect system-wide RevPAR at North American hotels will likely increase at a 4% to 6% rate in 2014, with the improvement largely coming from rate.
- Smaller the group, probably the stronger, but seeing improvements really in all segments
- Weak government demand. RevPAR in downtown D.C. declined about 1.5% while RevPAR at MAR hotels across the greater Washington market declined 6%.
- In Europe, 4Q RevPAR growth should improve as comparisons get easier in the U.K.
- In Europe, strong performance in Eastern Europe offset declines in London, enabling +2% RevPAR.
- Constant-dollar RevPAR to increase at a low single-digit rate at our European hotels in 2014
- Modeling a mid-single digit RevPAR growth for 2014 on easy comps
- Constant-dollar RevPAR in the Middle East will likely remain challenged.
- Unrest in Egypt reduced RevPAR in the Middle East by 3%.
- 2014 constant-dollar RevPAR in the Caribbean and Latin America market to grow at a mid-single-digit rate.
- Favorable leisure demand drove RevPAR up 7% as greater numbers of groups and leisure travelers enjoyed the resorts in Cancun.
- Expect mid-single-digit constant-dollar REVPAR in 2014, constrained a bit by recent supply growth
WORLDWIDE HOUSE MARGINS
- Expect roughly 100 basis points of margin improvement for the full year.
- 4Q North America RevPAR to increase 4.5% to 5.5%.
FY 2013 INCENTIVE FEES
- Expect very strong performance at our hotels in New York, Boston, San Antonio, and New Orleans and expect more hotels globally will be paying incentive fees during the year.
- Expect G&A spending to grow more slowly in 2014.
- Expect to return roughly $1 billion to shareholders through share repurchases and dividends in 2013 and expect to continue to repurchase shares in 2014.
- There's no real change in trend lines on attritions or cancellations. Obviously, in the Washington market the whole government shutdown had some impact.