MINT Expects More Closures-Layoffs as Pandemic Limits Tourist Arrivals

MINT Expects More Closures-Layoffs as Pandemic Limits Tourist Arrivals

Pandemic and travel restriction would pressure Minor International Public Company Limited (MINT) to cut more jobs and shut down some of properties, reported Bloomberg.


“We have hotels that can’t even pay for staff or electricity because they’re totally empty,” Bill Heinecke, chairman and founder of Bangkok-based Minor, said in an interview. “We’ve taken a lot of job cuts and we’ll probably have to take more.”


MINT runs more than 500 hotels in 55 countries, however, the Covid-19 pandemic has damaged its operations dramatically as the company faced the biggest quarterly loss in FY2Q20, revenue tumbled 79% caused the group to record a net loss of 8.45 billion baht ($271 million).   


Despite thousands of jobs having been cut earlier and 83% of its hotels currently operational, MINT is struggling to survive amid the ongoing pandemic as guests are kept away. 


“Travel for leisure and business remains mostly suspended even in countries with relative success in containing the outbreak. Thailand’s reluctance to open its borders makes it one of the most difficult markets for Minor” said Heinecke.


“It’s complicated to come to Thailand, and it’s clear to me that Thailand doesn’t want visitors right now in their policy making,” Heinecke said. “Maintaining zero cases of local transmissions by keeping the country hermetically sealed has come at the expense of the national economy.” he added.


MINT expected the hotel operations ratio to up to 90% by the end of the fourth quarter. Meanwhile Thailand accounts for only 6% of MINT’s hotel portfolio.  


However, MINT’s business in China fortunately have returned to pre-pandemic levels with occupancy rate at its two hotels rising to 80% in August. The food operations as well saw same-store sales growth of 8%.


MINT’s shares have slumped 43% this year, outpacing the 20% drop in Thailand’s benchmark SET Index of stocks.