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Marriott's Powerscourt Hotel in Co Wicklow
Marriott's Powerscourt Hotel in Co Wicklow
Image: Instagram

The world's biggest hotel company is about to be born

And a few high-profile hotels in Ireland are caught up in the deal.
Nov 16th 2015, 3:26 PM 24,366 9

MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL HAS bought hotel rival Starwood for $12.2 billion (€11.4 billion), creating the world’s biggest hotel chain.

The merger will give the company more than 5,000 hotels and 1.1 million rooms worldwide in a deal that includes iconic brands like Sheraton, Westin and Ritz-Carlton.

Together the two hospitality giants turned over more than $2.7 billion (€2.5 billion) in revenue over the year to the end of September.

Marriott expects the deal, which has board approval but still needs to be cleared by shareholders, would save it at least $200 million (€187 million) per year. The transaction is expected to be finalised in mid-2016.

Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson said: “The driving force behind this transaction is growth.

This is an opportunity to create value by combining the distribution and strengths of Marriott and Starwood, enhancing our competitiveness in a quickly evolving marketplace.”

90390053 The under-renovation Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin Source: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie

The sector has in recent years been forced to respond to the threat of peer-to-peer accommodation providers like Airbnb, whose valuation has now surpassed that of any publicly listed hotel company.

In Ireland, hotels that come under the Marriott International umbrella include luxury accommodation like The Shelbourne and the Powerscourt Hotel, which was recently named the best hotel in the country.

Starwood’s portfolio includes the five-star Westin Dublin and four-star Sheraton Athlone.

- With AFP

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Peter Bodkin

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