The US hotel management sector is braced for a major shake-up as Aimbridge Hospitality and Interstate Hotels & Resorts announced that they are to merge. Bringing together the top two businesses in the market, the agreement will create the largest hospitality company of its kind in the world. By Nick Short
The move from Aimbridge and Interstate throws down a hefty gauntlet to their competitors – putting even more distance between the top two operators and their rivals in US hotel management.
Following the completion of the merger (due to take place by the end of the year), the new company will boast an expanded portfolio of more than 1,400 branded and independent properties across 49 US states and 20 nations. This combines Aimbridge’s 800 properties with Interstate’s 605 hotels and means the merged business will offer more than 200,000 rooms (including those in operation and under development), while managing a workforce of more than 60,000 employees worldwide.
Another key element of the agreement will be the new company’s ability to use the combined data gathered by all of Aimbridge’s and Interstate’s brands. It’ll be able to draw on an unprecedented vault of guest information – giving it insights that could well prove to further add to its competitive advantage, especially in the US hospitality market.
Little is currently known about the details of the merger, but Advent International, the private equity investment firm that acquired a majority stake in Aimbridge in January, will take on majority ownership of the new company. This means that Aimbridge’s current head office in Plano, Texas, will become the new headquarters – with offices in Atlanta, California, Chicago, Puerto Rico and Virginia rounding off its US presence. Internationally, the company will maintain offices in Birmingham and Glasgow in the UK, as well as in Amsterdam, Netherlands; and Moscow, Russia.
As-yet unrevealed is the future structure of the new company – whether it will retain the Aimbridge and Interstate infrastructure or go through a full rebrand. It also remains to be seen whether the new venture will retain every brand or property from across both businesses. There’s a chance the merger process could see the optimisation of the combined portfolio, so it’ll be interesting to see further details of the agreement – and how the market reacts to them – as they emerge.
Interview with Aaron Greenman, Executive Vice President, Acquisitions & Development - EMEA Interstate Hotels & Resorts coming soon stay tuned.
Interstate Hotels & Resorts will speak during the Paris Asset Forum see program here.
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