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Chatham Lodging (CLDT) Buys Hilton Garden Inn for $43.5M

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Chatham Lodging Trust (CLDT - Free Report) announced the acquisition of Hilton Garden Inn Portsmouth Downtown in New Hampshire. The hotel, comprising 131 rooms, has been acquired for a price of $43.5 million or around $332,000 per room.

Chatham Lodging used cash and borrowings available under its revolving credit facility to fund this purchase. Island Hospitality Management will manage the property.

Centrally located in downtown Portsmouth, the hotel is situated quite near to the thriving Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Pease International Tradeport — a premium office and industry hub. This highlights a solid demand for the property primarily from government and corporate sector. It has been recently renovated and will not require capital investment til 2022.

The above discussed buyout is likely to enhance Chatham Lodging’s portfolio in the upper Northeast corridor, where the company owns properties which have emerged as strong performers. Moreover, as the Portsmouth market is a high barrier-to-entry market, it considerably reduces the risk of new supply in the area.  

This premium asset is anticipated to improve the company’s portfolio age and enable it to capitalize on economy of scale. In addition, with several other properties in the area, the buyout increases its room-pricing power.

Chatham Lodging is under contract to sell two hotels over the next months. The revenue per available room (RevPAR) of these properties is lower than the Hilton Property’s RevPAR of $163. Hence, this is an opportune time for the company to reinvest the sale proceeds in such strategic acquisitions. The acquisition will likely contribute to Chatham Lodging’s portfolio RevPAR over the long run.

Although, prudent investments in strategic assets are likely to help the company fortify its position in the hotel space, the sale of non-core assets will result in dilution of earnings.

This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company has underperformed its industry year to date. Chatham Lodging’s shares have gained 2.8%, while the industry recorded growth of 4.9% during this time frame.

Key Picks

Better-ranked stocks in the REIT space include Getty Realty Corp. (GTY - Free Report) , Seritage Growth Properties (SRG - Free Report) and Communications Sales & Leasing, Inc. (UNIT - Free Report) . While Getty Realty and Seritage flaunt a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Communications Sales & Leasing carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Getty Realty’s funds from operation (FFO) per share estimates for the current year moved 3.1% upward to $2 in a month’s time.

Over the last 60 days, Seritage’s FFO per share estimates for full-year 2017 inched up 0.5% to $2.01.

Communications Sales & Leasing’s 2017 FFO per share estimates climbed 14.4% to $2.54 during the same time frame.

Note: All EPS numbers presented in this write up represent funds from operations (“FFO”) per share. FFO, a widely used metric to gauge the performance of REITs, is obtained after adding depreciation and amortization and other non-cash expenses to net income.

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