The report of a new Ebola-like disease spreading in Africa raises concerns among the tourism sector after one island nation decides to temporarily close hotel business in fear of the so-called Marburg virus.
Thai stocks in the tourism sector closed lower on Wednesday in response to this negative sentiment.
Minor International Public Company Limited (SET: MINT) fell THB 0.25 or 0.79% to close at THB 31.25 per share.
The Erawan Group Public Company Limited (SET: ERW) dropped THB 0.12 or 2.48% to close at THB 4.72 per share.
Central Plaza Hotel Public Company Limited (SET: CENTEL) decreased THB 0.5 or 0.91% to close at THB 54.25 per share.
However, S Hotels and Resorts Public Company Limited (SET: SHR) plunged sharply by THB 0.30 or 9.64% to close at THB 3.56 per share.
Airline operators such as Asia Aviation Pcl (SET: AAV) and Bangkok Aviation Pcl (SET: BA) closed 1.44% and 1.55% lower, respectively.
Meanwhile, Airport of Thailand Pcl (SET: AOT) closed flat at THB 72.50 per share.
According to preliminary data gathered by ‘Kaohoon,’ only SHR and MINT are the two hotel operators that operate in the African region that is facing the spread of Marburg in Mauritius, Tanzania and Equatorial Guinea.
Krungsri Capital Securities (KCS) wrote in its research paper that SHR’s Outrigger Mauritius hotel contributed around 4% to SHR’s revenue in 2022. KCS cited that the hotel shouldered around 10 million baht of fixed costs per month during the Covid lockdown in 2020-21 in Mauritius.
In assumption of three or six months closure, KCS expected 7% and 14% of impact, respectively, to SHR’s bottom line in 2023, which is forecast to be around 415 million baht. Still, this has limited impact to SHR’s target price of THB 5.00 per share, in KCS’ view.
Meanwhile, MINT has seven hotels in Tanzania and two in Mauritius. However, CGS-CIMB Securities expected limited impact to MINT’s performance this year.
Assuming that these nine hotels have to be closed for three months, the impact on MINT’s 2023 net profit would be 0.3%, which is still insignificant, in CGS-CIMB’s view. Meanwhile, if these nine hotels have to close for six months, the impact would be 0.6% of MINT’s 2023 net profit.
However, if the virus outbreak were to spread throughout Africa in the worst case scenario, the impact would be about 2% of MINT’s 2023 net profit if MINT has to close down these hotels for three months as MINT has 50 hotels in the continent. Most of MINT’s hotels in Africa are small hotels. Thus, even though these 50 hotels formed 9% of its total hotels, the number of rooms would be only 4%, based on CGS-CIMB estimate.