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NYC’s 21 Club & parent Orient Express gets $1.86 billion buyout offer from India’s Tata Group

Excerpt from Hindu BusinessLine

Oct 18, 2012 9:25 am

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If the takeover is successful, Taj’s iconic branding and luxury reputation will surely only help Orient’s properties.

— Rafat Ali

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India’s business conglomerate Tata group and its hospitality arm Indian Hotels Company today said it will make an offer to acquire US-based Orient Express Hotels, which owns a chain of luxury hotels, tourist trains, cruises and restaurants — including the 21 Club in Manhattan.

Indian Hotels, which operates the iconic Taj properties in India and abroad, said it had acquired 6.9 per cent stake in Orient Express during 2007 and 2009, and now will make an offer to buy the remaining 93.1 per cent.

Mint: Orient Express had rebuffed Indian Hotel’s attempt to take a significant stake in it in 2007 with the US company’s CEO Paul White writing to Krishna Kumar that he didn’t believe “there is a strategic fit between your predominantly domestic Indian hotel chain and our global portfolio of luxury hotels.”

Orient-Express owns and maanges 45 hotel, cruise and luxury rail businesses in 22 countries, including properties such as Hotel Cipriani in Venice, Grand Hotel Europe in St Petersburg, Mount Nelson Hotel in Cape Town, Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro and Maroma Resort and Spa on Mexico’s Riviera Maya. It also operates six luxury tourist trains, two river cruise operations and the 21 Club, one of New York’s most iconic restaurants.

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