July 11, 2023

ONYX Hospitality Group shared its expertise on “Accessing Bank Finance and Securing Debt Finance in a Post-COVID World” at SEAHIS 2023


Bangkok, July 5, 2023 – Thailand-based ONYX Hospitality Group proudly announces the participation of its Senior Vice President and Group Head of Finance, Mr. Wuthivet Vetchabutsakorn, as a guest speaker at the prestigious SEAHIS 2023 (South East Asia Hotel Investors Summit) held in Bangkok on June 26th and 27th. 

Mr. Vetchabutsakorn’s presentation at SEAHIS 2023 focused on accessing bank finance and alternative models for securing debt finance in a post-COVID world. His valuable insights and expertise provided industry stakeholders with knowledge and guidance to navigate the evolving landscape of hotel finance. Notable remarks from his session include: 

“As a leading medium-sized hospitality management company in Southeast Asia, ONYX Hospitality Group aims to help owners effectively grow their businesses through strategic investment backed by our market intelligence and expertise.” 

“While maintaining an internationally recognized level of standard, we also prioritize maintaining high maneuverability of operation in response to market dynamics.” 

“Our commitment to fostering long-term business relationships is reflected in our close collaborations with with like-minded partners who aim for sustainable and quality growth, fostering ever-growing expansion within the region.” 

Acknowledging the challenges faced by the hospitality industry during the pandemic, ONYX Hospitality Group has been at the forefront of managing liquidity and exploring innovative financial strategies to support its growth plans. The company’s strong relationships with banks in Thailand, built on its well-established brands and rich company heritage, enabled successful financial support through short- and long-term loans, as well as collaborations with financial institutions for loan reprofiles, showcasing resilience and determination in overcoming adversity. 

ONYX Hospitality Group attributes its credibility and solid relationships with financial institutions to regular and transparent communication, providing honest insights into business challenges and presenting contingency plans to address them. The company diligently prepares cash flow projections to assess liquidity risks, demonstrating its commitment to loan pre-payments whenever feasible. 

Addressing lending decisions, Mr. Vetchabutsakorn highlighted that Thai financial institutions base their decisions on project cash flows, while collateral such as assets, buildings, lands, shareholder guarantees, and shares are considered essential security measures. Brand reputation plays a significant role, with banks relying on extensive databases and historical performance records that consistently demonstrate the superior performance of branded properties. 

Caption: Moderator: Charles Blocker, CEO, IC Partners Limited, Wuthivet Vetchabutsakorn , Senior Vice President and Group Head of Finance, ONYX Hospitality Group, Jacob Samuel, Managing Director, Ares Management, Konthee Prasertwongse, Head of Investment Banking, CIMB 

Regarding amortization schedules, Mr. Vetchabutsakorn highlighted the challenge faced in Southeast Asia, with term loans typically spanning 7 to 10 years. To facilitate hotel performance and minimize financial strain, loans often require bullet payments at the end of the term or refinancing options. In certain high-risk projects, cash sweep arrangements have been introduced, incentivizing hotel project finance by sharing a percentage of revenues exceeding the target with banks. 

The trend of property developers diversifying into hotel assets reflects a desire to access recurring income streams, reducing reliance on built and sold property types. The region has also witnessed numerous joint venture projects with foreign investors, particularly in Bangkok and Phuket, indicating a positive investment climate. 

Looking ahead, as interest rates stabilize, a more favorable lending environment is anticipated, potentially as early as mid-2024. The recovery of tourism to pre-COVID levels, coupled with improved airlift capacity exceeding 80% of pre-pandemic levels, is expected to contribute to this positive outlook. 

ONYX Hospitality Group, with its 44 operating properties, including 18% owned properties, eagerly anticipates the launch of Amari Raaya Maldives, one of the most highly anticipated openings in the Indian Ocean in 2023. 

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