This is exactly what I expected after reading article after article about this year’s increase in hotel occupancy rates: hotels are increasing their improvement spending following a 4 year decline. According to USA Today, hotels are expected to spend around $3.5 billion this year on hotel improvements such as up carpeting, furniture, technology, etc. The industry was aggressively investing in room improvements in 2008 prior to the great recession, but then companies began holding onto their cash due to the unstable market. Now that things have calmed, hotel owners are willing to start putting money back into their properties. As far as I can tell, for the hotel industry, the great recession is over, which is a good sign for TiVUS.
Looking over the data for hotel absolute demand for July 2011, you wouldn’t even know we were still in a recession. A new record was broken, with 105,760,239 hotel rooms sold last month, which is up 3.6% from last July. Amazingly this is only the second time the industry has sold over 100 million rooms in a single month (the last time being last July). I think the best metrics are that the average daily rate for a room went up 3.4 percent to hit $102.50, and revenue per room finished up 4.8 percent at $70.86.
Of course this is good news for Tivus, as increased hotel room sales mean increased hotel revenue, leading to more technology spending. In general, boom times for hotels mean boom time for their vendors. The best part for Tivus, is that the luxury hotel market saw the greatest rise in demand, which is where Tivus is targeting the first installations. Now it’s time to turn these increased revenues into revenue for Tivus, which I know Phil Marriott is doing.
Tivus posted their Q2 2011 Financials earlier this afternoon, after filing for an extension early last week. You can find the financials on OTCMarket.scom at http://www.otcmarkets.com/stock/TIVU/financials. Enjoy!
Wanted to let everyone know we’ve had some major technical issues with our existing TivusConnect blog, rendering it unusable. We’re working on migrating all the old posts over to this site, but this takes a little time. Stay posted for more information. If you need more information, feel free to call Steve Haag or Michael Blunk, Investor Relations for Tivus, at 832-413-6206 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since Host Hotels is turning the downtown Philadelphia property into a contract (ahead of schedule), we felt it was a good time to show you some pictures of the actual installation. As you know, the system was first announced back in March, with progress moving along throughout the year as Host remodeled the property.
As of late July, Tivus has installed their system in 1200 rooms at the property, and successfully deployed our unique ad-insertion system. Below are a few of the photos, the full album can be viewed at Tivus’ Philadelphia Picasa Album.
When I travel I always bring my laptop, and get frustrated I can’t connect it to the TV like I do at home. In these modern computer-centric times, using a hotel room’s TV as your computer’s monitor, or to connect a video gaming system (such as a Nintendo Wii, Sony PS3, etc.) is something many guests demand. This is why the TiVUS Solution includes a Plug Panel, allowing guests to connect their electronic devices to their TiVUS e-SmarTV.
Apparently other companies’ are agreeing with Host Hotels (as they are embracing the TiVUS Solution) and are installing their own Plug Panels. At the Riveria in Palm Springs, a HotelChatter contributor found a plug panel in their room. At the JW Marriott Marquis in Miami, a small company called TeleAdapt got their plug panels installed in all the rooms, allowing for Bluetooth connectivity to the in-room TVs. Hyatt Hotels has designed a rather robust panel that includes all the connectors you could possibly want. Marriott started installing plug panels back in 2008, and were planning to get them in all rooms by the end of 2009, I guess the recession stopped them.
Below is a link for an annotated version of TiVUS’ latest filing, which I recommend you have handy during today’s conference call. Please share it with anyone you wish, as Steve Haag will be referencing information from this document in the shareholder conference call today.
And in case you forgot, the call in information is:
The call will begin promptly at 4:15 p.m. EDT (1:15 p.m. PDT) on Thursday, August 11, 2011. For both U.S. and international callers to participate, dial +1 (605) 477-2100, then enter the participant access code, 1057879#, when prompted. Participants are encouraged to access the call at least five minutes before it is to begin.