Wyndham Hotels & Resorts Reports First Quarter 2020 Results
Company Completes Amendment to Credit Facility
Waiving Covenant Testing until Second Quarter of 2021
PARSIPPANY, N.J., May 4, 2020 -Wyndham Hotels & Resorts (NYSE: WH) today announced results for the three months ended March 31, 2020. Highlights include:
Diluted earnings per share increased 5% to $0.23, and adjusted diluted EPS decreased 4% to $0.50.
Net income was $22 million for the first quarter, a 5% increase over the prior-year quarter; adjusted net income was $47 million, an 8% decrease over the prior-year quarter.
Adjusted EBITDA decreased 4% compared with the prior-year quarter, to $107 million.
System-wide rooms grew 2% year-over-year.
The Company’s development pipeline grew 4% year-over-year to 189,000 rooms.
Global RevPAR declined 23% year-over-year in constant currency.
“During the most challenging crisis the hotel industry has ever endured, our highest priority has remained the well-being and safety of our guests, owners and team members. We have taken the difficult but prudent measures to reduce our costs and bolster our liquidity while providing support and relief for our franchisees to help them weather this downturn,” said Geoffrey A. Ballotti, chief executive officer. “Nearly 5,900 of our 6,300 hotels in the U.S. remain open, and with nearly 90% of those properties located outside of major cities in drive-to destinations that cater to a leisure customer base, we believe that our asset-light business is well positioned for a quick recovery when travel demand returns.”
Revenues decreased 12% to $410 million, compared with $468 million in the first quarter of 2019. The decline includes lower pass-through cost-reimbursement revenues, which have little to no impact on adjusted EBITDA, in the Company’s hotel management business. Excluding cost-reimbursement revenues, revenues declined $29 million or 9%, reflecting a 23% decline in constant-currency RevPAR, as well as lower license fees which were adversely impacted by declining travel demand.
Net income increased 5% to $22 million, or $0.23 per diluted share, compared to $21 million, or $0.22 per diluted share, in the first quarter of 2019 due to lower separation-related expenses associated with the Company’s spin-off and a decline in overall expenses due to cost reduction initiatives, partially offset by the decline in revenue (excluding cost-reimbursement revenues). Full reconciliations of GAAP results to the Company’s non-GAAP adjusted measures for all reported periods appear in the tables to this press release.
Business Segment Discussion
The following discussion of first quarter operating results focuses on revenue and adjusted EBITDA for each of the Company’s segments.
The Company’s franchised system increased 3% globally, which included the transfer of 7,100 rooms from the hotel management segment related to the CorePoint Lodging asset sales. Excluding the transfer, franchised net rooms grew 2% globally, including 40 basis point growth in the U.S. and 5% growth internationally.
RevPAR declined 23% globally due to travel restrictions related to COVID-19. In the U.S., RevPAR declined 17%, and internationally RevPAR declined 37% primarily due to a 70% decline in China.
Revenues decreased $26 million, or 10%, compared to first quarter 2019 reflecting the impact of COVID-19 on travel demand globally, while a decline in Adjusted EBITDA of $5 million, or 4%, was partially mitigated by cost savings initiatives.
The Company’s managed system decreased 11% globally primarily reflecting the transfer of 7,100 rooms to the hotel franchising segment as a result of CorePoint Lodging asset sales. Excluding the transfer of rooms to the hotel franchising segment, the Company’s managed system decreased 1% primarily due to the loss of rooms in the U.S. that were previously covered by unprofitable hotel management guarantees.
RevPAR declined 21% globally, primarily reflecting a 17% decline in the U.S. and a 31% decline internationally.
Revenues decreased $30 million compared to the prior-year period due to lower cost-reimbursement revenues, which have little to no impact on adjusted EBITDA. The decline in cost-reimbursement revenues is due to the loss of management properties resulting from the CorePoint Lodging asset sales and the termination of unprofitable hotel-management guarantees. Absent cost-reimbursements, revenues and adjusted EBITDA were unchanged as the unfavorable impact of COVID-19 on our owned and managed properties was offset by $5 million of management contract termination fees received from CorePoint Lodging asset sales.
During the first quarter of 2020, the Company opened 58 new hotels totaling 6,200 rooms, a year-over-year decline of 47% as new construction openings were delayed in China and conversion volumes were materially lower in the U.S. during March. The Company retained 94.8% of its hotel system over the last twelve months compared to 94.7% during the same period last year. As of March 31, 2020, the Company’s hotel system consisted of approximately 9,300 properties and over 828,000 rooms, a 2% year-over-year increase.
The Company’s development pipeline consisted of 1,500 hotels and approximately 189,000 rooms, a 4% year- over-year room increase, or 2% decline sequentially. Approximately 58% of the Company’s development pipeline is international and 72% is new construction, of which nearly 40% have broken ground.
Balance Sheet and Liquidity
As of March 31, 2020, the Company had $749 million of cash on hand and $2.9 billion of debt outstanding, of which $2.4 billion was first lien debt. The Company’s first lien leverage ratio was 2.6x as of March 31, 2020, within the 5.0x limitation of its quarterly tested leverage covenant under its credit agreement. In April, the Company amended its credit agreement and obtained a waiver of the quarterly tested leverage covenant through and including the first quarter of 2021 (unless earlier terminated by the Company, subject to certain conditions). The Company is not required to test this covenant until June 30, 2021. The covenant calculation was also modified for the second, third and fourth quarters of 2021 to use annualized EBITDA rather than the last-twelve-months EBITDA, as previously required. In return for the amendment, among other modifications, the Company agreed to maintain minimum liquidity of $200 million, pay 25 basis points of higher interest on outstanding borrowings and restrict share repurchases. The Company has the ability to make future quarterly dividend payments up to the amount of $0.16 per share, so long as liquidity is greater than $300 million. In addition, the Company has the right to elect out of the waiver period at its discretion, at which time the restrictions on dividends and share repurchases would be lifted.
For the three months ended March 31, 2020, net cash provided by operating activities was $17 million, compared to $7 million in the prior year period. The increase was driven by lower separation and transaction cash outlays.
Share Repurchases and Dividends
During the first quarter of 2020, the Company repurchased approximately 878,000 shares of its common stock for $45 million at an average price of $51.57 per share. The Company suspended its share repurchase activities in March.
The Company paid common stock dividends of $30 million, or $0.32 per share, in the first quarter of 2020.
Due to the material adverse impact on the global economy and travel demand resulting from COVID-19, the Company’s Board of Directors approved a reduction in the quarterly cash dividend policy from $0.32 per share to $0.08 per share, beginning with the dividend that is expected to be declared, at the Board’s discretion, in the second quarter of 2020.
In response to the effects on travel demand as a result of COVID-19, the Company identified approximately $255 million of cash savings. In connection with these initiatives, the Company has eliminated approximately 440 positions, reduced capital spend to focus only on the highest priority projects, eliminated all non-essential spend, consolidated certain facilities and indefinitely suspended Mr. Ballotti’s salary and the Company’s Board of Directors’ cash compensation. As a result, the Company recorded a restructuring charge of $13 million during the first quarter of 2020 and expects to incur an additional charge of $18 million during the second quarter of 2020.
The first quarter charge primarily represents future cash expenditures for the payment of severance and related benefits costs resulting from the elimination of approximately 260 positions. The Company expects this initiative to be substantially complete in the second quarter of 2020 and that annual savings realized will be approximately $30 million.
The second quarter charge will represent future cash expenditures of approximately $13 million for the payment of severance and related benefit costs resulting from the elimination of approximately 180 positions and approximately $5 million of lease-related costs. The Company expects this initiative to be substantially complete in the second quarter of 2020 and that annual savings realized will be approximately $21 million to $25 million.
The Company’s ability to assess the impact of COVID-19 on its full-year financial results continues to be limited due to the rapidly evolving circumstances and uncertainty in travel demand. As a result, the Company remains unable, at this time, to accurately predict and provide 2020 outlook.
Conference Call Information
Wyndham Hotels will hold a conference call with investors to discuss the Company’s results and outlook on Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at 8:30 a.m. ET. Listeners can access the webcast live through the Company’s website at www.investor.wyndhamhotels.com. The conference call may also be accessed by dialing 877 876-9173 and providing the passcode “Wyndham”. Listeners are urged to call at least five minutes prior to the scheduled start time. An archive of this webcast will be available on the website for approximately 90 days beginning at noon ET on May 5, 2020. A telephone replay will be available for approximately ten days beginning at noon ET on May 5, 2020 at 800 839-1162.
Presentation of Financial Information
Financial information discussed in this press release includes non-GAAP measures, which include or exclude certain items. These non-GAAP measures differ from reported GAAP results and are intended to illustrate what management believes are relevant period-over-period comparisons and are helpful to investors as an additional tool for further understanding and assessing the Company’s ongoing operating performance. The Company uses these measures internally to assess its operating performance, both absolutely and in comparison to other companies, and to make day to day operating decisions, including in the evaluation of selected compensation decisions. Exclusion of items in the Company’s non-GAAP presentation should not be considered an inference that these items are unusual, infrequent or non-recurring. Full reconciliations of GAAP results to the comparable non-GAAP measures for the reported periods appear in the financial tables section of this press release.
About Wyndham Hotels & Resorts
Wyndham Hotels & Resorts (NYSE: WH) is the world’s largest hotel franchising company by the number of properties, with 9,300 hotels across approximately 90 countries on six continents. Through its network of over 828,000 rooms appealing to the everyday traveler, Wyndham commands a leading presence in the economy and midscale segments of the lodging industry. The Company operates a portfolio of 20 hotel brands, including Super 8®, Days Inn®, Ramada®, Microtel Inn & Suites®, La Quinta®, Baymont®, Wingate®, AmericInn®, Hawthorn Suites®, The Trademark Collection® and Wyndham®. Wyndham Hotels & Resorts is also a leading provider of hotel management services. The Company’s award-winning Wyndham Rewards loyalty program offers 83 million enrolled members the opportunity to redeem points at thousands of hotels, vacation club resorts and vacation rentals globally. For more information, visit www.wyndhamhotels.com. The Company may use its website as a means of disclosing material non-public information and for complying with its disclosure obligations under Regulation FD. Disclosures of this nature will be included on the Company’s website in the Investors section, which can currently be accessed at www.investor.wyndhamhotels.com.
Accordingly, investors should monitor this section of the Company’s website in addition to following the Company’s press releases, filings submitted with the Securities and Exchange Commission and any public conference calls or webcasts.
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of federal securities laws, including statements related to Wyndham Hotels’ current views and expectations with respect to its future performance and operations, including revenues, earnings, cash flow and other financial and operating measures, share repurchases and dividends, restructuring charges and statements related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Forward-looking statements include those that convey management’s expectations as to the future based on plans, estimates and projections at the time Wyndham Hotels makes the statements and may be identified by words such as “will,” “expect,” “believe,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “goal,” “future,” “outlook,” “guidance,” “target,” “estimate,” “projection” and similar words or expressions, including the negative version of such words and expressions. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Wyndham Hotels to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.
Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, without limitation, general economic conditions; the continuation or worsening of the effects from the
COVID-19 pandemic, its scope, duration and impact on the Company’s business operations, financial results, cash flows and liquidity, as well as the impact on the Company’s franchisees and property owners, guests and team members, the hospitality industry and overall demand for travel; the success of the Company’s mitigation efforts in response to the COVID-19 pandemic; the Company’s performance in any recovery from the
COVID-19 pandemic; the performance of financial and credit markets; the economic environment for the hospitality industry; operating risks associated with the hotel franchising and management businesses; the Company’s relationships with franchisees and property owners; the impact of war, terrorist activity or political strife; concerns with or threats of pandemics, contagious diseases or health epidemics, including the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and actions governments, businesses and individuals take in response to the pandemic, including stay-in-place directives and other travel restrictions; risks related to the acquisition of La Quinta and the Company’s relationship with CorePoint Lodging; the Company’s ability to satisfy obligations and agreements under its outstanding indebtedness, including the payment of principal and interest and compliance with covenants thereunder; risks related to the Company’s ability to obtain financing and the terms of such financing, including access to liquidity and capital as a result of COVID-19; and the Company’s ability and plans to pay dividends and to repurchase shares including the timing and amount of any future share repurchases and dividends, as well as the risks described in the Company’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and any subsequent reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, subsequent events or otherwise.