The Thai group is in the process of finalizing (by October 2018) its acquisition of a majority stake in NH Hotel Group. It is thus pursuing a clearly international expansion strategy based on the acquisition of existing groups with an attractive portfolio and well-located institutions.
A desire to expand internationally:
Minor International clearly favours external growth for the rapid development of its fleet and territorial influence. Its acquisition of a stake in the NH Hotels group (308 properties and 46,558 rooms in Europe as of 1 January 2018 - Hospitality ON data) is in line with its expansion strategy. The group focuses on well located midscale and upscale brands and products with development potential and brands with a strong identity. With the forthcoming acquisition of a majority stake in the Spanish group, Thailand intends to capitalize on its Asian presence to reach customers on the continent and bring them to its hotels in Europe. In an interview with the Spanish business newspaper Expansion, Dillip Rajakarier, CEO of Minor Hotels, expressed confidence in the strength of NH Hotels' offer as "difficult to compete with". He anticipates a strong potential development of the group's brands, considering that it is difficult to find "more complementary brands" than those already present in the group's portfolio, combined with those operated by NH hotels which are positioned in a lower scale. The CEO of Minor Hotels has shown a willingness to support and pursue the strategic plan already planned by the Spanish group. This orientation seems realistic given the investments made in the Portuguese brand Tivoli, which was acquired in 2016 (see below).
The group's brand:
In 2001, the group developed the Anantara Hotels & Resorts brand in a luxury segment with the first opening in Thailand. With 39 locations, the brand arrived in Europe in April 2017 with the opening of a 280-key property in the Algarve.
The brand will see the opening of a 26-villa resort in Vietnam in the last quarter of 2018, it will take its first steps in South America with the opening of a property in Bahia, Brazil in 2019 and will arrive in North Africa in 2019 with an opening of 93 keys in Tozeur.
Three openings are planned in Asia in 2019: in China, Malaysia (123 keys), and Bali (70 keys), as well as 164 keys on Mauritius.
In 2020 the brand will open a 225-room property in the United Arab Emirates and a 230-key resort in Tangier, Morocco.
2021 will be the year of the opening of an hotel with 100 rooms and 50 villas in Zanzibar and 233 keys in the UAE.
The upscale brand in the Middle East and Africa includes 23 stores (4 openings in 2017) and plans to expand by 3,000 keys. The brand also made its debut in 2017 in Lisbon with the rebranding of a 119-keys Tivoli hotel. The group has developed a variation of the brand under the Avani+ brand focused on the local immersion of its visitors.
58 keys, including 33 villas with swimming pool, will open in Koh Samui as well as 382 keys in Bangkok.
The brand will open the group's first property in South Korea with 400 keys in 2020.
3 openings are scheduled in 2020 in the UAE, respectively 225, 372 and 527 keys.
The company will also open 41 keys in Tunis and a second 250-key property in 2021.
Minor Hotels acquired the brand in 2016 following the bankruptcy of the Portuguese bank that owned it. At that time, the brand had 12 brands in Portugal and 2 in Brazil. Minor Hotels has invested 90 million euros in the renovation of the entire portfolio and for the construction of the Congress Center in Tivoli Lagos Vilamoura (324 keys). The brand's hotels' upscale services in premium locations with strong local interaction. Some are equipped with SkyBars where tourists and locals alike may gather.
The company, which is celebrating its 85th anniversary this year, has a pipeline of openings in Thailand, South Korea, Bali and China. Two openings are also planned in Brazil in 2019 and a third in 2020.
This Australian serviced apartment brand was also acquired by the group. So far located only in Australia, the brand will see the opening of a 110-apartment property in Beirut's Sodeco district.
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