Unless you’ve been a loyalty card holder, you may not even know who Starwood Hotels & Resorts are. But their reach in the hospitality industry is huge offering a wide range of brands to the travelling public, from the Sheraton, to the Westin, Four Points by Sheraton, W Hotels, St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, Le Méridien , element , Aloft and Tribute Portfolio. Their properties are ever present around the world.
To accommodate all the reasons you travel, Marriott offers 16 hotel brands across almost 4000 locations in more than 60 countries.
Consumers know many of them, but you may not know of all of them unless you truly are a luxury traveller.
Their brands, in addition to the known Marriott name, include the Ritz-Carlton, BVLGARIE Hotels and Resorts, Edition, Renaissance Hotels, Delta, Gaylord, Courtyard, and Fairfield just to name a few.
They total over 700,000 rooms worldwide.
There may be people concerned about the future of the travel industry, but clearly, the hotel industry is not among them.
In November the Marriott Corporation offered Starwood a studding US12.2 billion to buy out their brands and management contracts. It should be known that often hotel brands do not own the actual properties they manage. A local company may own it, and select the brand they think will best suit the target market they hope to reach.
Once a brand is selected they will be obliged to invest according to the terms to keep up the quality of the brand as defined by the brand managers.
After the offer a Chinese insurance company offered a higher price and a bidding war commenced that did get a fair bit of business press coverage. Anbang, with its consortium of investors, seemed determined to win that bidding war.
But just this week, Anbang blinked and ended the bidding war. It had gone up to $15 billion before dropping out, so the Marriott with its last bit of $14 billion will be the new owners of the Starwood Brands.
All travelers may not be as enthusiastic since the loyalty program of Starwood was seen to be better than Marriott’s.
But one thing is clear. As you plan your travels over the coming years, there is a good chance your stay may be in a Marriott property, regardless of the name on the building.
Starwood shareholders will likely approve the offer this week.
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