Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure

The hospitality, tourism and leisure industry is a significant contributor to the Australia and New Zealand economies. It is deeply-embedded part of the community in every city, town and suburb. Direct and hands-on experience in the industry is essential, as well as understanding the opportunities and challenges required to running successful businesses.

Issues

  • The pub and club industry faces increasing scrutiny and pressure from the community, politicians and the media. Venue reputation becomes increasingly difficult to manage.
  • Potential changes to legislation concerning trading hours, smoking and gaming continue to be a threat to the industry.
  • The most significant challenges for the pub and club industry at present are trying to manage the social and business impacts of escalating alcohol-fuelled violence, and changes in the gaming industry.
  • The market price for pubs has bottomed, so greater opportunities exist for buyers to invest in the industry.
  • Decreasing values of bars/pubs means lenders are more cautious about loan-to-value ratio covenants.
  • Hospitality and tourism operations are susceptible to the impact of natural disasters, both in damage to assets and significant reduction in revenue, eg floods in Queensland.
  • Properties require constant upgrade and refurbishment to keep their market position.
  • Some properties, because heritage-listed, may not have an alternate use.
  • The high Australian dollar in recent times has put added pressure on tourism, particularly in Queensland.

Questions that should be asked

Questions that hospitality, tourism and leisure operators and their stakeholders should be asking themselves include:

  • Do we understand the changing regulatory environment and its impact on licensing requirements, entitlements, management expertise and employee compliance/training?
  • Do we have a good operations team with the right experience and industry knowledge?
  • How can we manage changes in costs related to market conditions, eg the risks associated with violence (requiring more security systems and staff) and increasing energy costs (ie fridges and cool rooms need to run 24/7 and are a high portion of cost base)?
  • Are our operating and back office systems monitoring performance adequately?
  • When is the best time to discuss our capital expenditure requirements with financiers?
  • Is our sinking fund sufficient for refurbishment costs?

Our expertise

Our hospitality, tourism and leisure team has a broad range of experience, including pub groups, registered clubs, accommodation hotels and tourist resorts. We specialise in preparing troubled businesses for sale or return to management.

By staying abreast of consumer demands and industry trends, as well as fully understanding the increasingly-complex regulatory and licensing environment, we provide effective advice to financiers, management and shareholders and assist them to manage these challenges.

We also have relationships across the industry and throughout the supply chain - such as valuers, selling agents, operators, interested parties, industry bodies and back office service providers - which allows us to act quickly, solve problems efficiently and connect our clients and their stakeholders with the right people/parties.

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