Home Travel Industry News

StayWell maps out mass-expansion, hotel chains beware

Australia’s StayWell Hospitality Group (SWHG) is expecting to operate 100 properties worldwide by 2017, with a focus on expanding its footprint in Asia and the Middle East, the group’s CEO, Simon Wan said in an interview with Khaleej Times.

Australia’s StayWell Hospitality Group (SWHG) is expecting to operate 100 properties worldwide by 2017, with a focus on expanding its footprint in Asia and the Middle East, the group’s CEO, Simon Wan said in an interview with Khaleej Times.

The privately owned SWHG which operates two brands, Park Regis and Leisure Inn, currently manages 34 properties in Australia, Dubai, Indonesia, New Zealand, India and Singapore, and has an additional 12 under development around the world including the UK.

With an annual turnover of A$58 million, the group has increased its portfolio by 30% in the past 12 months alone, and now has a focus on increasing its domestic presence while maintaining focus on international markets such as South Africa after signing an agreement to bring its brands to the country, Wan told the paper.

“We are also in the final stages of negotiating with a partner in China, which will bring these two brands into the country. In addition, we are in the final stages of negotiation to have a partner in the UAE. Right now they have seven hotels across the Middle East; they have a hotel in Iraq, in Turkey and in Lebanon, and so this move will definitely strengthen our position.”

“In India we are already up and running, as we have signed nine hotels there. Two of them are already open and seven are currently under development. By 2017, we hope to have 15 hotels there,” he said.

“Also, we will soon be opening two hotels in London. Our hope is to have about a dozen hotels in the UK and Europe, so in a geographic sense, we are very evenly spread out with our plans to open a hundred hotels.”

“We are also in the process of negotiating two other hotels in Dubai. One has 210 rooms, and the other 265 rooms. One will hopefully be open in 12 months, while the other will open in 18 months,” Wan said.

“We are also in negotiations in Saudi Arabia, which is a very strong market domestically. We hope to finalise negotiations of a partnership there. In addition, we are also looking at Qatar and Doha. Our target is to hopefully have 15 hotels in the Middle East by 2015, with at least five in the UAE.”

“Our Middle East, China and South Africa partnerships are completely new and young partnerships. Another new country we are focusing on is Indonesia. We are negotiating a joint venture there, since it is a big country which is going through a huge economic boom. Our aim at this stage is to work closely with our new partners to implement our business plan and strategies, and be able to execute them successfully.”

Do you think the big hotel chains should be worried about StayWell’s expansion?