Disney closes all theme parks worldwide
>> As various sports leagues and major conferences decide to postpone seasons and events in wake of the spreading coronavirus pandemic, Disney has decided to close all of its amusement parks.
Airbnb loses $276M in Q4 2019
>> Airbnb, which was preparing to go public in 2020, nearly doubled its losses in the fourth quarter last year — and that was before coronavirus upended the world. Airbnb’s fourth-quarter revenue leaped 32% to USD 1.1 billion, but EBITDA plunged 92.3% to a loss of USD 276.4 million.
Bookings slumped 96% in Beijing, with only 1,655 reservations in the first week of March, down from 40,508 bookings from Jan. 5 to Jan. 11.
Trip.com joins group to unveil virtual banking service
>> Trip.com Group has partnered with Standard Chartered, PCCW and HKT to launch a new virtual banking service and Asia’s first all-in-one numberless bank card, Mox. The new virtual banking service will offer a comprehensive suite of retail financial services, as well as unique telecom, entertainment and travel products, all in one place.
Expedia withdraws 2020 guidance due virus impact
>> Expedia Group announced it is withdrawing its adjusted EBITDA guidance this year due to the growing impact from the COVID-19 outbreak and the resulting uncertainty on travel trends. The company now expects the negative impact in the first quarter to be more than the USD 30-40 million range provided earlier.
OYO left with skeleton crew in China after layoffs
>> SoftBank-backed Indian hotel chain OYO is undergoing a massive downsizing in China, slashing more than 7,000 employees since November, according to a report by local media outlet Jiemian. The number of employees at OYO China has plunged from more than 9,800 in November 2019 to about 2,700 as of Tuesday.
Travelzoo exits Asia Pacific after years of losses
>> After years of losing money in Asia Pacific, Travelzoo announced it will close its business in the region this week. Operating profit reached USD 17 million in North America and Europe last year, but an operating loss of USD 7.5 million in Asia Pacific dragged the global profit down to USD 9.5 million. Asia Pacific accounts for only 5.7% of the company's global revenue.
American, United set fare caps after EU travel ban
>> American Airlines and United Airlines are setting fare caps after ticket prices soared following President Trump's travel ban from Europe. There are already limited seats on most flights due to the spring break holiday as Americans rush to figure out how to get home amid the coronavirus pandemic. Some travelers found that prices for other major U.S. airlines have soared for flights back to the United States from Europe.
Cathay Pacific cuts more capacity in Hong Kong
>> Cathay Pacific said it would further cut capacity as demand continues to fall in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. The Hong Kong-based carrier, which has been among the airlines hardest hit by the virus, said it has reduced capacity across its network by 65% in March and April.
Princess Cruises halts global operations
>> Carnival Corp. fell as much as 24% in London after its Princess Cruises unit said it will pause global operations for two months because of the impact of the coronavirus, which has spread on several ships worldwide. Some voyages underway will be completed.
Global hotel investment volumes reach $66B
>> The coronavirus outbreak inevitably sends short-term shockwaves through the hotel investment market, in particular China, but investors are expected to remain confident in the long-term, says JLL. Global hotel transaction volumes in 2019 reached USD 66 billion.
China emerged as the third most liquid hotel transaction market after Japan and Singapore, recording USD 1.4 billion in transaction or 11% of Asia Pacific’s total hotel investment volume.