Wyndham Hotel Group, created in 2006 from the hotel division of the conglomerate Cendant and its predecessor Hospitality Franchise Systems, is now the 4th largest hotel group worldwide with close to 700,000 rooms. Historically very focused on franchise and North America, the group has become international and diversified. Today, it is poised to take new strategic turns.
Created in 2006, Wyndham Hotel Group inherited the American company Cendant Corporation and Hospitality Franchise Systems, a company founded by Henry Silverman in 1991 after leaving Blackstone. Under the aegis of its founder, who a few years earlier had already supervised the hotel chain Days Inn during its takeover by Reliance, Hospitality Franchise Systems rapidly grew in the 1990s. The company, which went public in 1992, acquired a number of hotel franchises.
It began in 1990 with Howard Johnson, a chain whose first hotel opened in 1954 in Savannah (Georgia) and developed well in the United States in the 1960s and 1970s, and then moving into the hands of Marriott and then Premier Motor Inns until ceasing activities, which opened the door to the brand’s takeover by HFS. In 1991, HFS took over Days Inn -a chain founded in Atlanta in 1970 by Cecil B. Day- which had just declared bankruptcy. Super 8, a budget chain founded in 1974 in South Dakota, was taken over in 1993, with more than 1,000 hotels in operation.
After pursuing its growth during the following decade, the conglomerate that became Cendant, also active in other sectors (real estate, travel, automobile rental...), acquired in 2004 from Marriott International the hotel chain Ramada, founded in 1954 in Arizona and which then totalled more than 120,000 rooms worldwide. Then, in 2005, Cendant took over the group Wyndham International, including the eponymous brand Wyndham Hotels & Resorts (founded in 1981 in Dallas), Wyndham Garden, Wingate by Wyndham and Summerfield Suites, a chain dedicated to long stays that had been bought out by Wyndham in 1998. In 2006, Cendant acquired Baymont Inns & Suites (founded in 1973 in Wisconsin) from Blackstone, but Cendant, then the leading hotel operator worldwide with close to 525,000 rooms, found itself deep in an accounting scandal that brought about the dismantling of the corporation.
Wyndham Hotel Group was created in 2006; it took over the hotel franchise activities of the former conglomerate. Alongside this reorganization, it continued to grow, with the opening the following year of the first Wyndham property in China. The group set ambitions to go international and kept purchasing new brands, Microtel and Hawthorne Suites from Hyatt (2008), then Tryp Hoteles (2010) from Melia. In 2015, the group took over Dolce Hotels & Resorts, a hotel chain with 24 properties and a total of 5,500 rooms located in Europe and North America, with strong positions on the MICE segment. It also allowed the groupe to strengthen its portfolio of hotels operated under management contracts.
The Wyndham hotel group, formerly a pure franchiser largely focused on North America, became a leading actor outside America through franchise operations, conversions and signatures on many territories –particularly Asia where the group surpassed 1,000 properties in China. The group celebrated its 100th property in Germany in 2014 and the opening of the group’s first upscale hotel in Africa. Turkey, India, Peru, Guatemala, Australia, United Kingdom… many territories are now Wyndham's development targets.
In summer 2017, Wyndham launched a new brand, The Trademark Collection, a "soft brand" intended to bring together independent hotels on the 3 to 4 star ranges, while allowing them to retain their personality. Just over a month later, it acquired AmericInn for 170 million dollars, adding around 200 American hotels to its portfolio. Finally, like other major hospitality groups, it has undertaken the split of its different businesses: hotel operator (Wyndham Hotel Group) and timeshares (Wyndham Destination Network + Wyndham Vacation Ownership). The spin-off will take effect in 2018.