Comwell Hotels getting future-ready

Press release - April 16 2019

Today, Comwell published its result for 2018. The financial statement indicates a slight dip in turnover. Massive investments in renovating the Group's hotels in 2018 will secure growth and a market share in the future.

Comwell has just published its result for 2018. With turnover of 890.9 m DKK, compared to 903.2 m DKK in 2017, the Group has seen a slight dip in turnover of -1.4%. The result before tax is 18.0 m DKK, compared to 11.5 m DKK in 2017. The result of primary operations is lower than expected and is affected by a range of factors.

"Throughout the spring of 2018, there was a risk that a conflict would hit the Danish job market. Comwell experienced a significant decrease in order volume as well as a great number of arrangements being cancelled. We believe that the consequence of this risk has had a negative impact on turnover," says Group CEO, Peter Schelde.

Comwell working on hotels in Sweden and developing operations in Sønderborg 
The Comwell Group's Swedish activities had an impact of -10.6 m DKK on the year's result. In 2018, the physical structures of the two hotels in Varberg and Lerum were upgraded. 

In Sønderborg, the decision not to extend the lease agreement and to terminate operations with effect as of 1 January 2019 meant that the year's result took a hit of -5.2 m DKK which can be attributed to operations for 2018 together with additional costs associated with withdrawing from the lease.

Investments in renovations will secure growth and market shares 
In 2018, Comwell continued to make significant investments in maintaining and upgrading all its hotels. A total of 49.4 m DKK was invested in regular improvements and upgrades to facilities and inventory.

"In 2018, Comwell Kongebrogaarden and Comwell Kellers Park underwent huge renovation and expansion. This meant that we did no have full room capacity at Comwell Kongebrogaarden for an extended period, and that the spa facilities and restaurant at Kellers Park were closed. But it is important that we are always investing in the future and ensuring that our product lives up to our guests' expectations and demands, so that we can attract and keep both new and loyal customers going forward," continued Peter Schelde.

Comwell's activities in Aalborg, Aarhus, the Triangle Region, and at hotels around Copenhagen have all strengthened the Group's position on local markets and are all contributing a positive result to Comwell.

Expansions in the coming year
As part of the company's overall strategy, plans have been put into action to expand Comwell's position on the Danish hotel and conference market.

Comwell's first hotel in Copenhagen - Comwell Copenhagen Portside - is under construction in an attractive location in the city. With 484 rooms and conference capacity for up to 600 people, the hotel will be Comwell's largest. The hotel is expected to open in the second half of 2020.

In Aarhus, a local planning process is underway with the building owner to expand the current hotel to include more rooms, meeting spaces, a sky bar, and increased restaurant facilities. The expanded Comwell Aarhus is expected to open in 2021.

A transaction was performed in Kolding in 2018 with the aim of bringing all hotels and theatres under one owner. Following this, comprehensive renovation and upgrade works were put into action for the 180 double rooms at Comwell Kolding, as was the expansion and upgrading of the restaurant facilities. A local planning process will be put into action together with the building owner to secure a basis for expanding the current hotel with 120 extra rooms, and more meeting spaces and parking spaces. 

Comwell investing in training
The secret to Comwell Hotel's success is undoubtedly its employees and the difference they make every day both for guests and each other. That's why Comwell invested more than 4.5 m DKK in leadership and follow-up training for all full-time employees in 2018.

In collaboration with external partners, Comwell has put together a training process that takes its inspiration from the Group's 50-year history and its values to create a common foundation followed by a subject-specific module focusing on, amongst other things, sustainability, service and, last but not least, concepts where the driving element is Comwell's prize-winning meeting concept which forms one of the pillar's of Comwell's history.

Prize for best service benefits guests
If you ask around the biggest businesses and organisations, Comwell is one of Denmark's leading meeting and conference hotels. This year, Comwell was once again nominated for two of the industry's biggest prizes, "Best Food Concept" and "Best Service", at the Møde & Event Award 2019 held in conjunction with the Nordic Meetings & Events EXPO. Comwell Borupgaard won the prize for "Best Service".

"This prize and recognition is down to our many talented employees. The core of our product is our employees who make a difference both for guests and for one another every day. When we make big investments in our many talented employees, this is always to create professional and personal access to our core product and service in order to benefit out guests," added Peter Schelde.

Key figures from the year's result
Comwell a-s operates conference and spa hotels in Scandinavia - 14 in Denmark and two in Sweden. Conference, restaurant and banqueting operations are run in Aarhus under the trademarks "Centralværkstedet" and "Smedien". BC Hospitality Group, Copenhagen, works as a collaborative partner operating the Comwell Conference Center Copenhagen, one of Denmark's largest conference centres with 54 meeting spaces. 

The Comwell Group has a total of 2,253 rooms and more than 1,000 employees. 

Turnover 890.9 m DKK, compared to 903.2 m DKK in 2017.
Result before tax +18.0 m DKK, compared to +11.5 m DKK in 2017.
Result after tax +11.3 m DKK, compared to +6.7 m DKK.
The Group's equity is 241.7 m DKK, with financial soundness of 47.5%.

An AGM will be held at Comwell Køge Strand at 14:00 on 8 May 2019.