Skift Take

Despite all the pessimism on Wall Street these days, plenty of companies are still out there looking and moving forward on deals. The hotel sector will remain in the spotlight.

If the Choice Hotels move to acquire Radisson Hotel Group Americas closes later this year, the issue then becomes whether Choice keeps all brands, merges some, or eliminates others.

However, the thinking that “those with the most brands wins” is still strong in the hotel industry, and plenty of observers got it wrong when they thought that the Marriott’s acquisition of Starwood in 2016 would lead to a brand consolidations.

As for what Choice gains with this deal, its push to be more upscale will be furthered although the Radisson name has not been up there in the top few since the Carlson family days.  Choice would still have some work to do to compete in that space.   

Radisson’s Country Inn & Suites brand fits right in with the Choice family. It remains to be seen what Choice would do with the Radisson Red, Radisson Individuals and others in the portfolio that never really gained traction among North America’s crowded field of brands.

The Choice Hotels International acquisition of Radisson Hotel Group Americas transaction is a continuation of the trend where larger companies involved in hotel management and franchises overshadow smaller ones because of mergers. This deal, though, is especially interesting because it was well-known that Radisson was looking for a buyer, but Choice didn’t seem like a logical partner, at least to us initially.

One main takeaway is that even with all the doom and gloom on Wall Street because of bear markets, concerns over what the future holds with inflation and ever-rising gas prices, companies are still out there looking and moving forward on deals.

This means the hotel sector will remain in the spotlight.

Prior to the recent NYU hospitality conference, we at Skift’s Daily Lodging Report predicted internally that there would be one big merger announcement.   Although HHM announced during the show that it would acquire Urgo Hotels & Resorts, the Choice-Radisson deal is more in line with what we had been expecting. 

Although it may have been intended to announce the transaction on the first day of the conference, last-minute details may have held things up.

Alan Woinski is the founder and editor of Daily Lodging Report, a Skift brand.

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Tags: brands, choice hotels, mergers and acquisitions, radisson, radisson hotel group

Photo credit: What will become of the Country Inn & Suites brand if the Choice-Radisson merger closes? Country Inns & Suites

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