The Chinese travel agency makes hospitality news every week. Today, it is unveiling its ambitions to move from being a simple booking platform to a hotel operator.
While Ctrip gained notoriety in Europe after its mergers with Accor and Radisson to market their hotels on its platform, now it is now proving to be a major future accommodations player in China.
Ctrip subscribed for USD 32 million of shares in a private Chinese hotel group, Zhejiang New Century Hotel Management. Ctrip and Green Tree Hospitality Group, which is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and owns $30 million worth of shares, are the leading investors in these early days of Zhejiang New Century, which aims to raise up to HKD 1.4 billion (USD 180 million) through its IPO in Hong Kong.
As of April 30, 2018, Zhejiang New Century Hotel Management operates 130 properties (30,178 rooms) in 53 Chinese cities. With a portfolio of nine brands, including four high-end brands - New Century Grand House, Grand New Century, New Century Wonderland and New Century Resort - 3 new brands are under development. In addition, the group announces a pipeline of 20,000 new rooms within five years.
Creation of a hotel group
Ctrip is not at its first attempt in the hotel industry. At the end of 2018 it announced the creation of three new hotel brands. Led by Rezen Hotels Group - the new Ctrip unit in charge of accommodations operations - they will be developed in partnership with Shanghai Jinmao Hotel Management. These two players aim to launch more than 30 co-branded hotels over the next three years, representing more than 6,000 rooms.
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