Lodging owner Supertel Hospitality Inc. of Norfolk, Neb., reported it lost $4.6 million, or 20 cents per share, in the first three months of this year, compared with a loss of $4.1 million, or 18 cents a share, in the same period last year.
Supertel said its funds from operations, a measure of performance by real estate investment trusts, was a loss of $1.5 million, compared with a loss of $1 million in the first quarter of 2011. Revenue was up 2.5 percent to $16.7 million.
Supertel President and CEO Kelly Walters said revenue and occupancy at its upper midscale properties improved, and the company agreed to acquire a 100-room Hilton Garden Inn at Solomons Island, Md., for $11.5 million. It also sold two economy motels for $2.86 million, using the proceeds to pay down debt.
The first-quarter loss included writing down $1.2 million in the value of some investments and $1.8 million in the value of properties that are for sale.
Walters said the recent $30 million investment in Supertel by an Argentine company means a new financial and operational direction for the company, with $20 million of the money going to buying hotels within its strategy of upgrading its properties. The Maryland hotel marks Supertel’s re-entry into the acquisition market after several years of selling lower-scale motels, he said.
The company is renovating some existing properties to maintain brand standards and reduced its debt by 16 percent over the past year to $146.5 million.
Walters said the first quarter was a “critical, positive shift” that would “restructure and adapt the hotel portfolio to contemporary market expectations.”
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