If Anbang’s consortium had followed through with its $82.75 per share all-cash bid for Starwood Hotels & Resorts, valued at nearly $14 billion, would Marriott have tried to outbid them?
Today Marriott gave that answer: No.
“At this point, no I don’t think so,” said Bill Marriott, executive chairman of Marriott International. “We were done.”
Marriott was speaking during an interview broadcast on Periscope at the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit being held in Dallas.
As reported, and according to an April 1 Securities and Exchange Commission filing from Starwood, Anbang made a non-binding offer of $82.75 per share for Starwood before it decided to mysteriously and abruptly walk away from the deal due to “various market considerations.”
The battle for Starwood fought out between Anbang and its investor group and Marriott was indeed a struggle, and Bill Marriott said he doubts the hospitality industry will see the likes of that deal anytime soon again.
“I don’t think there’s going to be anything like what we’ve done, that’s that overpowering right now, but you just never know. Might not be very smart to speculate,” he said. “We have to get through what we’re going through with ourselves. We have to integrate the companies and we have a lot of work to do. It’s a compelling transaction for us.”
When asked what might happen to some of Starwood’s brands, Bill Marriott gave the following responses:
“Right now it’s too early to predict,” he said. “There’s a lot of compatibility with the different brands.” He also mentioned that Starwood’s Element, W, and Westin brands are “very strong in their own right,” adding, “but we may have to tweak them to be stronger.”
When asked if Marriott’s decision to buy Starwood was driven by a desire to protect the company against the power of online travel agencies and gain more market share, he said, “Obviously, the more clout you have in the marketplace, the better your relationships with your partners, OTAs, credit card companies, coffee sales, and reservation systems, all those kinds of things become more attractive to our owners in producing more profit to the bottom line.”
Bill Marriott’s comments come just before Starwood and Marriott shareholders were set to vote on April 8 to approve the new merger agreement between the two companies. The new deal is valued at approximately $13.3 billion, a significant increase over the $12.2 billion Marriott originally offered to Starwood in November.
Chronology of Marriott-Starwood-Anbang:
- Monday, March 14: Starwood Gets Takeover Bid by Consortium Led by Chinese Firm Anbang
- Monday, March 14: New Starwood Takeover Bid: The Players Behind the $13 Billion Offer
- Tuesday, March 15: Starwood Rival Takeover Bid: What It Means for Brands, Executives and Shareholders
- Friday, March 18: Starwood Accepts Anbang’s Takeover Bid, Marriott Plans a Counter-Offer
- Friday, March 18: Will Marriott Be Able to Top Anbang’s Offer for Starwood?
- Monday, March 21: Starwood Accepts Marriott’s Counter-Offer Worth $13.6 Billion
- Monday, March 21: Marriott Investor Call: This Is What We Have In Store for Starwood
- Wednesday, March 23: This Is How Marriott Could Lose Starwood to Anbang’s Investor Group
- Friday, March 25: What Marriott Is Telling Its Shareholders About Starwood the Second Time Around
- Friday, March 25: The Inside Story of Anbang’s Long Pursuit to Acquire Starwood
- Monday, March 28: Starwood Executives’ Golden Parachutes Got More Golden With New Marriott Offer
- Monday, March 28: Starwood Takeover: Anbang Raises Offer to Upset Marriott Bid
- Monday, March 28: What Starwood’s CEO Is Telling Employees About the Sale Process
- Tuesday, March 29: This Is What Marriott Has to Do to Keep Starwood from Anbang
- Thursday, March 31: Starwood Hotels Bidder Anbang Walks Away, Leaves Door Open for Marriott
- Friday, April 1: What Starwood’s CEO Is Telling Employees About Anbang Walking Away
- Friday, April 1: Marriott CEO: Most Important Thing for Us Is the Loyalty Program
- Friday, April 1: Marriott-Starwood Investor Call: Anbang’s Deal Was ‘Very Real’
- Friday, April 1: The Inside Story of Anbang’s Final, Failed Attempt to Acquire Starwood
- Monday, April 4: Starwood Leadership’s Employee Message: ‘We’ve Been Dealt a Tough Hand’