Lemon Tree Hotels Ltd. made a strong debut in both the National Stock Exchange and the Bombay Stock Exchange on Monday. The company’s shares closed significantly higher at Rs.71.65 in the NSE and Rs.71.60 at the BSE. This represented an increase of 27.95 percent and 27.86 percent respectively from the initial public offer price of Rs.56. The overall markets also remained positive thus helping the new listing to gain considerably on debut.
Lemon Tree Hotels shares got listed at a premium of Rs.61.60 at the opening on the NSE representing an increase of 10 percent from the offer price. Thereafter, though the stock traded below the Rs.60 level until the noon, there was more interest in the stock as the session went on. As a result, the stock remained above the Rs.60 level and traded around the Rs.65 level until 2.00 p.m. It was in the final hour of the trading; the stock has hit a high of Rs.73.9 in both the exchanges. At the bottom, the stock has hit a low of Rs.57.25 at the NSE and Rs.57.30 at the BSE.
Interestingly, it was only on the closing day of the IPO, i.e., March 28 that the company’s Rs.1,040 crore issue was subscribed 1.19 times, Bloombergquint.com reported. The IPO was well supported by qualified institutional investors. Demand for the stock was strong from them thus accounting for 3.89 times of the shares on offer. Based on a data provided by Axis Capital, the retail investor and non-institutional investors’ portion was subscribed only 0.12 times each of the offer.
Lemon Tree Hotels was founded in 2002 by its promoter Patanjali Govind Keswani. The company has been operating under three brand names for catering the different segments of the hotel industry. While the first one, Lemon Tree Premier, is for upper-mid-scale, the second one, Lemon Tree Hotels is meant for mid-scale. The third one, Red Fox, is focused on economy hotels.
For India, the company’s chain of hotel is the biggest among the mid-priced sector in the hotel industry. In terms of controlling interest in respect of owned and leased rooms, the company enjoys the status of the third biggest. Lemon Tree is also regarded as the ninth-biggest chain of hotels as far as owned, leased and managed rooms are concerned.
28 Cities in India
Lemon Tree is present in 28 cities in India at the end of January operating 4,697 rooms in 45 hotels. This included managed hotels. While the company owns about 3,200 rooms, managed rooms account for 1,500. Similarly, the upper mid-scale size is catered by ten hotels whereas 27 hotels’ focus is on mid-scale. The rest, eight hotels, focuses itself on the economic sector under its three brand names.
While owning some hotels directly, the company is also operating other hotels by virtue of long-term leases for third-party owners. Aside from this, the New Delhi-based hotel firm struck operating and management deals for some properties in the subcontinent. It remains to be seen whether the hotel sector continues to attract investors as the fresh financial year just commenced.
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