News for the Hospitality Executive
Sunstone Hotel Investors Reports Fourth Quarter 2010
ALISO VIEJO, Calif., Feb. 17, 2011 -- Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc. (the "Company") (NYSE: SHO) today announced results for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2010.
Fourth Quarter 2010 Operational Results (1) :
Ken Cruse, President, stated, "We are pleased to report strong results for the fourth quarter 2010. Our operators focused on efficiency as they translated higher top line revenues into impressive bottom line performance. Lodging demand continues to build as we move into 2011. Sunstone is well positioned to capitalize on growth opportunities, as evidenced by the two high quality hotel acquisitions we've completed thus far in 2011. Our balance sheet is strong - we ended 2010 with unrestricted cash of $278 million, an undrawn corporate credit facility and a well staggered debt maturity schedule. Our objectives are clear, our strategy is simple and we are aligned in our focus on delivering value to our stockholders."
The Company has filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010.
Disclosure regarding the non-GAAP financial measures in this release is included on page 5. Reconciliations of non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable GAAP measure for each of the periods presented are included on pages 9 through 13 of this release.
Sunstone Executive Management Team Update
On February 14, 2011, the Company announced that John V. Arabia has been appointed as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of Corporate Strategy effective April 4, 2011. Mr. Arabia will fill the role opened by the promotion of Kenneth E. Cruse to President.
"John brings over 20 years of lodging industry experience to Sunstone. We are pleased to add such a highly regarded industry leader as a key member of our already deep and talented team," said Ken Cruse, President. "I have known John for more than 15 years. His reputation, judgment, integrity, deep industry contacts and lodging industry expertise make him an exceptional choice to oversee Sunstone's finance discipline and to help develop and execute Sunstone's growth strategy. John will play a primary role in determining Sunstone's future capital allocation and balance sheet management strategies."
Mr. Arabia is currently Managing Director of the analytical research team for Green Street Advisors, Inc., covering the lodging and health care sectors. In 2008, he won the Wall Street Journal's "Best on the Street" award in the hotel and gaming category. Mr. Arabia holds an MBA in Real Estate/Accounting from The University of Southern California and a Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration from Cornell University.
Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square
On January 14, 2011, the Company completed the previously announced acquisition of the outside 62% interests in the Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square joint venture for approximately $37.5 million and, as a result, became the sole owner of the 460-room Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square hotel in New York City. The Company previously acquired a $30.0 million mezzanine loan secured by the equity in the hotel for a net purchase price of approximately $3.5 million. The hotel is encumbered by $270.0 million of indebtedness. Included in the acquisition price is approximately $25.0 million of cash and receivables resulting in a net purchase price of approximately $286.0 million, or $622,000 per key. The Company's preliminary estimates indicate that the per-key value includes approximately $100,000 in value associated with the revenues generated by the hotel's Times Square signage. The hotel's $270.0 million of indebtedness matures in January 2012 and bears a blended interest rate of LIBOR + 115 basis points. The Company expects to refinance the existing indebtedness during 2011 and intends to fund any refinancing shortfall with existing cash. Highgate Hotels, Inc., one of the largest independent operators in New York City, will continue to manage the hotel.
JW Marriott New Orleans
On February 15, 2011, the Company completed the acquisition of the 494-room JW Marriott New Orleans hotel from a joint venture led by Clearview Hotel Capital for $93.8 million. After closing costs, the all-in acquisition cost of the hotel is estimated to be $94.3 million (approximately $190,000 per room). The hotel is located in the world famous New Orleans French Quarter, with excellent accessibility to the convention center, Class A office corridor and Harrah's Casino. The all-in cost of $94.3 million represents a 12.8x EBITDA multiple based on the hotel's 2010 results of operations. The acquisition included the assumption of a $42.2 million floating-rate, non-recourse senior mortgage. The mortgage, which matures on September 1, 2015, has been swapped to a fixed-rate of 5.45% and is subject to a 25-year amortization schedule.
The $114.74 RevPAR generated by the JW Marriott New Orleans in 2010 ranks the property 9th out of Sunstone's 33 hotel portfolio. Originally built as a Le Meridien in 1984, the hotel was converted to a JW Marriott in 2004 following a $17 million ($34,000 per room) renovation. The hotel's rooms were last renovated in 2010 at a cost of approximately $3 million ($6,000 per room). The JW Marriott is one of the premier hotels in New Orleans and benefits from its preferred Canal Street location, extensive facilities, premiere brand affiliation and quality management.
In 2010, the New Orleans lodging market RevPAR grew by more than 17% and ranked first out of the US Top 25 markets in terms of RevPAR growth. Moreover, New Orleans boasts strong underlying market fundamentals, limited new hotel supply and a robust foundation of convention and leisure demand that is forecast to support superior RevPAR growth through 2014. Additionally, over $20 billion of construction projects are in final design or under construction in the local market, which will serve to enhance the city's infrastructure and overall appeal.
Ken Cruse, President, said, "Our acquisitions of both the Doubletree Times Square and the JW Marriott New Orleans are consistent with our objective of growing our portfolio by selectively acquiring institutional quality, upper-upscale urban hotels. These transactions were each conducted on an off-market basis, and both were immediately additive to Sunstone's portfolio quality and credit statistics."
Balance Sheet/Liquidity Update
As of December 31, 2010, the Company had approximately $333.9 million of cash and cash equivalents, including restricted cash of $56.0 million. The Company intends to use a portion of its cash balance for acquisition opportunities and capital investments in its portfolio.
As of December 31, 2010, total assets were $2.4 billion, including $2.0 billion of net investments in hotel properties, total debt was $1.1 billion and stockholders' equity was $1.1 billion.
The Company is subject to compliance with various covenants under its Series C preferred stock and its 4.6% Exchangeable Senior Notes due 2027 (the "Senior Notes"). As of December 31, 2010, the Company was in compliance with all covenants related to its Series C preferred stock and its Senior Notes.
During the fourth quarter of 2010, the Company invested $25.5 million in capital improvements to its portfolio. In light of the industry recovery and in order to position its portfolio for growth, the Company has expanded its 2011 capital investment plan. The Company's capital improvements program is aimed at value-adding renovation and repositioning projects, including the following:
On February 17, 2011, the Company's board of directors declared a cash dividend of $0.50 per share payable to its Series A cumulative redeemable preferred stockholders and a cash dividend of $0.393 per share payable to its Series C cumulative convertible redeemable preferred stockholders. The dividends will be paid on April 15, 2011 to stockholders of record on March 31, 2011. No dividend was declared on the Company's common stock.
Subject to certain limitations, the Company intends to make dividends on its stock in amounts equivalent to 100% of its annual taxable income. The level of any future dividends will be determined by the Company's board of directors after considering taxable income projections, expected capital requirements, and risks affecting the Company's business. In light of the Company's intent to distribute 100% of its annual taxable income, future dividends may be reduced from past levels, or eliminated entirely. Dividends may be made in the form of cash or a combination of cash and stock consistent with Internal Revenue Code regulations.
The Company will host a conference call to discuss fourth quarter results on February 17, 2011, at 4:30 p.m. EST (1:30 p.m. PST). A live web cast of the call will be available via the Investor Relations section of the Company's website. Alternatively, investors may dial 1-877-941-2928 (for domestic callers) or 1-480-629-9725 (for international callers). A replay of the web cast will also be archived on the website.
About Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc.
Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc. ("Sunstone") is a lodging real estate investment trust ("REIT") that owns 33 hotels comprised of 12,676 rooms. Sunstone's hotels are primarily in the upper upscale segment and are generally operated under nationally recognized brands, such as Marriott, Fairmont, Hilton, Hyatt and Starwood. For further information, please visit Sunstone's website at www.sunstonehotels.com.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws and regulations. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as "anticipate," "believe," "continue," "could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "plan," "predict," "project," "should," "will" and other similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions and forecasts of future results. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results to differ materially from those anticipated at the time the forward-looking statements are made. These risks include, but are not limited to: volatility in the debt or equity markets affecting our ability to acquire or sell hotel assets; national and local economic and business conditions, including the likelihood of a prolonged U.S. recession; the ability to maintain sufficient liquidity and our access to capital markets; potential terrorist attacks, which would affect occupancy rates at our hotels and the demand for hotel products and services; operating risks associated with the hotel business; risks associated with the level of our indebtedness and our ability to meet covenants in our debt and equity agreements; relationships with property managers and franchisors; our ability to maintain our properties in a first-class manner, including meeting capital expenditure requirements; our ability to compete effectively in areas such as access, location, quality of accommodations and room rate structures; changes in travel patterns, taxes and government regulations, which influence or determine wages, prices, construction procedures and costs; our ability to identify, successfully compete for and complete acquisitions; the performance of hotels after they are acquired; necessary capital expenditures and our ability to fund them and complete them with minimum disruption; our ability to continue to satisfy complex rules in order for us to qualify as a REIT for federal income tax purposes; and other risks and uncertainties associated with our business described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Although the Company believes the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that the expectations will be attained or that any deviation will not be material. All forward-looking information in this release is as of February 17, 2011, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement to conform the statement to actual results or changes in the Company's expectations.
This release should be read in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements and notes thereto included in our most recent reports on Form 10-K and Form 10-Q. Copies of these reports are available on our website at www.sunstonehotels.com and through the SEC's Electronic Data Gathering Analysis and Retrieval System ("EDGAR") at www.sec.gov.
The following table includes 2010 pro forma operating statistics for the Company's 33 Hotel Portfolio, which includes the 31 hotels owned by the Company as of December 31, 2010, the Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square acquired by the Company on January 14, 2011 and the JW Marriott New Orleans acquired by the Company on February 15, 2011.
Non-GAAP Financial Measures
We present the following non-GAAP financial measures that we believe are useful to investors as key measures of our operating performance: (1) Earnings Before Interest Expense, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization, or EBITDA; (2) Adjusted EBITDA (as defined below); (3) Funds From Operations, or FFO; (4) Adjusted FFO (as defined below); and (5) comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin for the purpose of our operating margins.
EBITDA represents income available (loss attributable) to common stockholders excluding: (1) preferred stock dividends; (2) interest expense (including prepayment penalties, if any); (3) provision for income taxes, including income taxes applicable to sale of assets; and (4) depreciation and amortization. In addition, we have presented Adjusted EBITDA, which excludes: (1) amortization of deferred stock compensation; (2) the impact of any gain or loss from asset sales; (3) impairment charges; and (4) other adjustments we have identified in this release. We believe EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA are useful to investors in evaluating our operating performance because these measures help investors evaluate and compare the results of our operations from period to period by removing the impact of our capital structure (primarily interest expense and preferred stock dividends) and our asset base (primarily depreciation and amortization) from our operating results. We also use EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA as measures in determining the value of hotel acquisitions and dispositions. Reconciliations of income available (loss attributable) to common stockholders to EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA are set forth on pages 9 through 11. Reconciliations and the components of comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin are set forth on pages 12 and 13. We believe comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin are also useful to investors in evaluating our property-level operating performance.
We compute FFO in accordance with standards established by the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts, or NAREIT, an industry trade group. The Board of Governors of NAREIT in its March 1995 White Paper (as clarified in November 1999 and April 2002) defines FFO to mean income available (loss attributable) to common stockholders (computed in accordance with GAAP), excluding gains and losses from sales of property, plus real estate-related depreciation and amortization (excluding amortization of deferred financing costs), and after adjustment for unconsolidated partnerships and joint ventures. We also present Adjusted FFO, which excludes prepayment penalties, written-off deferred financing costs, impairment losses and other adjustments we have identified in this release. We believe that the presentation of FFO and Adjusted FFO provide useful information to investors regarding our operating performance because they are measures of our operations without regard to specified non-cash items such as real estate depreciation and amortization, gain or loss on sale of assets and certain other items which we believe are not indicative of the performance of our underlying hotel properties. We believe that these items are more representative of our asset base and our acquisition and disposition activities than our ongoing operations. We also use FFO as one measure in determining our results after taking into account the impact of our capital structure. Reconciliations of income available (loss attributable) to common stockholders to FFO and Adjusted FFO are set forth on pages 9 through 11.
The revenue and expense items associated with our two commercial laundry facilities, any guaranty payments, and other miscellaneous non-hotel items have been shown below the hotel EBITDA line in presenting comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margins. Management believes the calculation of comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA results in a more accurate presentation of hotel EBITDA margins of the Company's 30 hotel comparable portfolio and 32 hotel pro forma comparable portfolio. See pages 12 and 13 for reconciliations of comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA to the most comparable GAAP measure. Our 30 hotel comparable portfolio includes all hotels owned by the Company as of December 31, 2010, excluding the Royal Palm Miami Beach, which is being renovated and repositioned beginning in 2010. The 30 hotel comparable portfolio also includes operating results for the Renaissance Westchester for all of 2009 and during 2010 while the hotel was held in receivership prior to our reacquisition of the hotel on June 14, 2010. Our 32 hotel pro forma comparable portfolio includes the Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square and JW Marriott New Orleans for all of 2009 and 2010, including prior ownership data.
We caution investors that amounts presented in accordance with
our definitions of EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA, FFO, Adjusted FFO,
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin may
not be comparable to similar measures disclosed by other companies,
because not all companies calculate these non-GAAP measures in the same
manner. EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA, FFO, Adjusted FFO, comparable and pro
forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and comparable and pro forma
comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin should not be considered as an
alternative measure of our net income (loss), operating performance,
cash flow or liquidity. EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA, FFO, Adjusted FFO,
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin may
include funds that may not be available for our discretionary use due
to functional requirements to conserve funds for capital expenditures
and property acquisitions and other commitments and uncertainties.
Although we believe that EBITDA, Adjusted EBITDA, FFO, Adjusted FFO,
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA and
comparable and pro forma comparable portfolio hotel EBITDA margin can
enhance an investor's understanding of our results of operations, these
non-GAAP financial measures, when viewed individually, are not
necessarily a better indicator of any trend as compared to GAAP
measures such as net income (loss) or cash flow from operations. In
addition, you should be aware that adverse economic and market
conditions may harm our cash flow.
Senior Vice President – Corporate Finance
Sunstone Hotel Investors, Inc.
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Increase Over Q4 2009: Reaches Definitive Agreement to Acquire 100%
Interest in the 460-room Doubletree Guest Suites Times Square, New York
/ January 2011
Hotel Investors Restructure Leadership Team: Arthur Buser, Jr. Resigns
as President and Chief Executive Officer, Kenneth Cruse Named President
and Robert Alter, Founder, to Co-Lead Sunstone's Growth Strategy /
Hotel Investors, Inc. Promotes Seven Key Executives Following
Transformational Year / March 2010
Hotel Investors Provides Business Update - Forfeits Additional 11
Hotels to Mass Mutual, Holder of $246 million Loan on the Hotels;
Expects a $83 million Impairment Charge Related to the Forfeitures
/ January 2010
|Sunstone to Forfeit the 258-room W Hotel San Diego to Lenders, May Pursue Similar Options with Other Mortgaged Hotels / June 2009|