For anyone whose livelihood revolves around the tourism industry, the Covid-19 pandemic would have left a significant mark.
This was one of the earlier challenges faced by ARA US Hospitality Trust (ARA H-Trust), which was listed on the SGX in May 2019. The Singapore-based trust currently owns and operates 36 hotels across 19 states in the U.S.
“It was the proverbial punch in the mouth from Mike Tyson—vicious, painful, and disorienting—that set us back from our original plans,” said Mr. Lee Jin Yong, Chief Executive Officer of the trust.
At one point at the depth of the pandemic in March 2020, the trust had to temporarily close 30 of its properties. This led to the trust not having any distributable income for the first half of 2020.
By pursuing other sources of demand and streamlining costs, the trust managed to weather the crisis and resumed paying dividends to unitholders this...