Thailands Minor Hotel Group Partners Sun International

Travel News Asia Videos Podcasts Latest Travel News Asia Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Thailands Minor Hotel Group (MHG), operator of over 100 hotels, resorts and serviced suites across Asia Pacific, the Middle East, the Indian Ocean and Africa, has formed a new strategic partnership with Sun International to own and operate a collection of eight properties in five African countries.

MHG has invested a total of R679.5 million (US$ 63.9 million) to own a 50% stake in two properties in Zambia and between 37.5% to 80% stakes in six further properties one each in Botswana and Namibia, along with two properties in Lesotho and Swaziland.

The majority of the properties will be reflagged to MHGs upscale Avani brand and takes the total number of MHG properties in operation to 118 in 19 countries.

Dillip Rajakarier, Chief Executive Officer of Minor Hotel Group, said, Minor Hotel Group is strategically expanding its hospitality business into many regions and Africa is a key focus where we have seen substantial growth potential. We are excited to be partnering with Sun International with their vast experience on the continent and this latest acquisition significantly strengthens MHGs position in Africa. Starting with these existing African properties, it is the intention of this new partnership to explore together other hotel and gaming opportunities that may arise in Africa and Asia.

Leveraging both companies core strengths, MHG will assume the hotel management, marketing and distribution of the properties under its Avani and Anantara brands, while Sun International will continue to manage the on-property casino operations.

The properties are: the 173-key Royal Livingstone Hotel and the 212-key Zambezi Sun in Zambia; the 196-key Gaborone Sun in Botswana; the 158-key Lesotho Sun and 105-key Maseru Sun in Lesotho; the 149-key Royal Swazi and the 202-key Ezulwini Sun in Swaziland, and the 173-key Kalahari Sands in Namibia.

Seven of the eight properties will be rebranded to Avani, of which there are currently five properties in operation in three countries, with a further three to be added before the end of the year, in addition to these seven African properties.

The well known Royal Livingstone Hotel will not be rebranded and will be marketed through Anantaras distribution channels.

Sun International Chief Executive, Graeme Stephens, said, This new partnership provides an opportunity for Sun International to create a strategic alliance with MHG, a leading hospitality and leisure operator, that brings not only hotel management and marketing expertise but also an ability and desire to invest in the equity of the assets under its management. With MHG now taking the bulk of management responsibility for these properties, this allows Sun International and its management team to increase their focus on the core casino assets that are driving its financial performance and strategy. In addition, Sun International will remain as 20%-50% shareholder in the partnership and will continue to benefit in the future growth of these properties.

MHG, Minor Hotel Group, Sun International, Africa, Avani, Anantara

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