- Hostel company Safestay posted a full-year loss after a rise in revenue was offset by higher finance costs.

Pre-tax losses for the year through December amounted to £0.64m, compared to losses of £0.60m on-year.

Revenue rose 26% to £18.4m, with like-for-like sales up 7%.

Safestay had closed all of its hostels from 1 April due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It said its focus had now switched to preparing for a staggered re-opening plan.

Chairman Larry Lipman said the company would open hostels 'over the course of 2020, as and when we believe they can be profitable'.

'Our focus is on ensuring the safety of our guests, initially targeting the domestic markets in each country, and then looking to gradually return to normal trading patterns,' he said.

'Navigating the re-engagement of the business will require us to be highly flexible as we test and match demand in individual markets, however, we are confident of being able to do this and making sure that we balance increased operational cost with increased income.'

'From an industry perspective, the hostel market is highly fragmented with a large number of small operators who are under pressure as a result of the pandemic and this may well create unique opportunities for Safestay.'

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