May 3, 2019 / 6:55 AM / 3 months ago

UPDATE 1-InterContinental posts slight rise in room revenue on China weakness

(Adds details on China performance, background)

May 3 (Reuters) - InterContinental Hotels Group Plc on Friday reported a slight rise in room revenue for the first-quarter, as strong demand in the Latin America and Caribbean markets was offset by weakness in the Greater China region.

IHG’s comments on weakness in China follows Accor SA , Europe’s biggest hotel group, which recently said weakness in Asia held back growth in revenue per available room (RevPAR) in its first quarter.

RevPAR grew only 0.3 percent in the quarter, but registered a 10 percent rise in its Latin America and Caribbean markets.

IHG, whose 13 brands include Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Hotel Indigo, has been focusing on business customers and expanding its luxury offerings to fight the rising challenges posed by companies such as Airbnb and online travel agents.

Weak demand in China’s less urbanised cities, pushed IHG to report no growth in RevPAR in the quarter compared to a 11 percent surge last year, when it was helped by bookings related to the Chinese New Year.

The Denham, UK-based owner of brands such as Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and InterContinental said RevPAR rose 0.3 percent compared with a 3.5 percent rise last year. (Reporting by Tanishaa Nadkar and Karina Dsouza in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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