With the UK hotel market facing the perfect storm of high VAT, low consumer spending and a weak economy, the number of transactions completed in the sector has fallen this year. But Troup insists that 2012 will see a marked increase.
“One of the issues for the reduction in transactional activity has been the desire of many quality buyers to hold out to buy a quality business,” he said. “As a result, many of the poorer-quality hotel opportunities have sold mainly as a consequence of competitive pricing.
“Where obvious quality is on offer we are seeing evidence of well-heeled buyers less concerned about the immediate level of return on the investment.”
Troup went on to explain that the industry is seeing a change in the type of purchaser looking to move into the hotel sector, adding: “We are seeing some evidence of new-to-the-trade buyers approaching us, in part as a consequence of a rise in unemployment feeding prospective buyers through to the hotel industry.
“In line with the events of the early 90s’ recession, professionals in the service industry who suffered in terms of employment chose the hotel trade as a viable means of alternative employment where they had control over their own destiny. An increase of ex-pats entering the sector is also being seen.
“Following dramatic staff cuts across all sectors, many individuals have chosen to leave behind their existing profession and consider hotels as a very real alternative.”
Cockett’s Hotel for sale
The news comes as Colliers International is marketing for sale Cockett’s Hotel in the centre of Hawes in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
Cockett’s has eight en suite letting bedrooms, a bar and residents’ lounge with open fire, a restaurant open to non-residents and, unusually, a new house for the owners.
Colliers International director Peter Bean, said: “Cockett’s has a first-class trading position on the high street of this busy market and tourist town. The business is strong but with potential for further development and there is an attached owner’s house providing modern accommodation on two floors.
“Cockett’s will appeal both to career changers looking for a well located country business with good owner’s accommodation and also to career hoteliers and restaurateurs”.
The asking price for Cockett’s is £695,000.