EasyHotel acquires Milton Keynes site

EasyHotel plc, the owner, developer and operator of super budget branded hotels, has today announced that it has conditionally acquired a 125-year leasehold of part of Norfolk House on Silbury Boulevard, a central site in Milton Keynes.

The development has already received planning permission and the acquisition will be completed subject to planning being finalised at the end of the judicial review period.

Norfolk House is centrally located in the town centre, just 200m from the main shopping centre and just 0.3 miles from The Hub Milton Keynes, a major leisure scheme. The group intends to convert its part of the building into a 124-bedroom hotel, which is expected to open by mid-2019 at a total cost of approximately £8.7m.

Milton Keynes is the largest of the 'New Towns' built in the UK and celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The town has been developed into a hub for businesses and has strong rail and motorway links as well as being in close proximity to Luton International Airport. Major leisure destinations nearby include Bletchley Park, Woburn Safari park, Gulliver’s Theme Park, the Milton Keynes bowl and Snozone, the UK’s first indoor ski centre.

The firm opened its new hotel in Newcastle in December 2017 on time and on budget. Whilst the hotel has only been open for a few weeks the Board is pleased to see this hotel trading in line with the strong performance of the hotels opened during the last financial year.

Following the opening of its Newcastle hotel, the Group currently owns seven hotels comprising 702 rooms, and it has a further 19 franchised hotels with 1,641 rooms.

The company has a committed pipeline of seven owned hotels comprising 941 rooms. Construction of hotels in Barcelona, Leeds, Sheffield and Ipswich has commenced and the 517 rooms should all open in the summer of 2018.

The planned hotel openings during the current financial year ending 30 September 2018 and beyond are expected to make a significant contribution to system sales, revenue and adjusted EBITDA going forward.

CEO Guy Parsons said, “We are delighted to have secured this site in Milton Keynes. Now in its 50th year, the town is home to many international business, has the third highest business start-up rate of any UK city and boasts an impressive range of shopping and leisure facilities.

“This acquisition is part of our ongoing strategy of offering comfortable, affordable accommodation in key tourist and business locations in the UK and internationally, and this completes the deployment of funds from our 2016 equity fundraising and bank loan.

“We continue to see a good number of attractive potential development opportunities, both in the UK and Europe to further accelerate the Group’s growth. These are both larger and more numerous than we had originally anticipated. Consequently, the Board is considering its finance options, which may include new equity and debt, to fund more hotels.”