With key property damaged, shares of Indian Hotels take a hit (Lead)

November 28th, 2008 - 6:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Nov 28 (IANS) The shares of Indian Hotels that owns the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower Hotel here dipped 17.03 percent Friday, as investors feared significant loss of business and damage to property because of the terror attack.Within minutes into trading, the scrip of the Tata group company was ruling at Rs. 42.45, against the previous close at Rs.48.45 - a loss of 12.38 percent, data with the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) showed.

The scrip finally closed at Rs.40.20, with a loss of Rs.8.25.

“The Taj property has been a jewel in the crown for the Tata group. This property has always enjoyed a very high occupancy,” said an analyst tracking the hospitality industry with a leading brokerage here.

“So a damage to the property and the loss of business is certainly expected to affect the bottomlines of Indian Hotels.”

The sea-facing landmark of India’s commercial capital was built in 1903 and offers a panoramic view of the Arabian Sea and the Gateway of India. Its architecture blends Moorish, Oriental and Florentine styles.

The vice-chairman of the company, R.K. Krishna Kumar, said Thursday that the entire top floor had gone up in flames but the group would not only rebuild the 105-year hotel, a landmark in this city, but also restore its fullest glory.

“As soon as the dust settles, we will go out there and begin the rebuilding.”

One of India’s largest and oldest hospitality enterprise that was established in 1903, Indian Hotels runs more than 70 hotels under its umbrella brand of Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces in India and overseas.

Its joint venture and subsidiaries include TajSats Air Catering, an airline catering service in association with Singapore Airport Terminal Services, and Roots Corp, a 100-percent self-owned company that operates the Ginger chain of budget hotels in India.

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