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Irish Independent
Irish Independent
Gordon Deegan

INEC operator returns to profit due to ‘staycationers’

The INEC arena in Killarney, Co Kerry

The operator of the INEC concert venue in Co Kerry returned to profit last year, recording pre-tax profits of €1.64m.

Accounts filed by Gleneagle Holdings (Killarney) Ltd show that the business returned to pre-tax profit after revenues surged by 56pc from €8.4m to €13.16m.

The business operates the four-star Gleneagle Hotel along with the INEC in Killarney and the pre-tax profits of €1.64m follow a pre-tax loss of €2.3m in 2020 – a positive swing of €3.95m.

The business last year benefited from a Covid-19 ‘staycation dividend’ as the directors state that it performed well after reopening in June 2021 “due to strong pent-up demand in the domestic market”.

Along with the strong domestic demand, the business benefited from “considerable capital investment in the refurbishment of the hotel, leading to an increase in occupancy levels and higher average room rates being achieved”.

The group recorded an operating profit of €2.96m and interest payments of €1.3m reduced profits to the pre-tax profit of €1.64m.

The business also benefited from ‘other operating income’ of €4.47m last year compared with €1.16m under that heading in 2020.

The ‘other operating income’ of €4.47m was made up of Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS), Covid Restrictions Support Scheme and other government supports.

The business also benefited from a commercial rates waiver in 2021.

The pre-tax profit last year also takes account of combined non-cash depreciation and amortisation costs of €1.4m.

Numbers employed last year increased from 150 to 206 as staff costs rose from €4.07m to €6.64m. At the end of December 2021, the business had shareholder funds of €4.28m. The company’s cash funds increased from €585,065 to €2.36m.

On the performance of the business this year, a spokesperson said that “recovery continued in 2022 albeit with a slow start due to restrictions in the early part of the year”.

She said: “We experienced a steady improvement from March onwards coinciding with the return of full-capacity events, concerts and conferences.”

The INEC staged many concerts and conferences this year that had been postponed in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid.

“As a result, our summer, autumn and winter trading has been strong, however, rising utility costs have impacted the latter part of the year,” the spokesperson said.

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