Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Hotels

Singapore Sovereign Wealth Fund to Buy Majority Stake in Resort Group Valued at $2.2 Billion

2 weeks ago

The Government of Singapore Investment Corporation has acquired a majority stake in Sani/Ikos Group, a luxury beach resort group in the Mediterranean, for an undisclosed amount.

The transaction that is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory approval, values the Mediterranean-based luxury resort operator at $2.27 billion.

U.S.-based Oaktree Capital Management, Goldman Sachs Asset Management and Moonstone Investments, French private equity fund Florac and UK-based Hermes Global Private Equity, will be selling their stakes to the Singapore sovereign wealth fund as part of this transaction.

Andreas Andreadis and Mathieu Guillemin will continue to manage the luxury beach resort group as CEOs and co-managing partners, while Stavros Andreadis, who was earlier the managing director of the hotel group, will become honorary chairman, according to a Sani/Ikos statement.

 The three came on board first when Greece-based Sani Resort and Ikos Resorts merged in January 2016.

Speaking about as the hotel group’s efforts to strengthen its brand and expand presence in Europe, Lee Kok Sun, chief investment officer of real estate of the soverign welath fund, said, “We believe this investment will generate resilient returns and is testament to our confidence in the Greek and wider European tourism sector over the long term.”

Sani/Ikos Group develops, owns and operates 10 resorts in Halkidiki, Corfu and Kos islands in Greece, and in Marbella and Estepona in the Iberian Peninsula.

Mergers and Acquisitions

MGM in Talks With Genting for Potential Purchase of Resorts World Sentosa

3 months ago

Casino-resort Genting Singapore is in talks with bidders for the purchase of Resorts World Sentosa and US-based MGM Resorts International is one of the top contenders, according to Bloomberg reports.

While MGM’s recent talks with Malaysia’s Lim family, that owns 53 percent stake in Genting Singapore, failed to yield an agreement, the Singapore-based casino operator is said to be in early-stage discussions with other potential buyers, as per Bloomberg.

As Covid outbreaks have led to a full closure of casinos in Macau — the Las Vegas of Asia, Singapore’s eased entry restrictions make it more open to international tourists.

A prospective buyer of Genting would also have to worry less about competition as Genting and Sands have an agreement with the Singapore government that limits the amount of gaming properties to the two entities, leaving Marina Bay Sands as its only competitor.

The Singapore Tourism Board had also reached an agreement in 2019 with Las Vegas Sands and Genting Singapore allowing them to significantly expand their respective integrated resorts.

Looking to decrease its dependence on Macau, where all casinos are closed and Japan very cautiously reopening to international tourists, MGM may be keen to explore other Asian destinations for its casino business.

Last year, speaking at the Skift Hospitality and Marketing Summit, William Hornbuckle, CEO and president of MGM Resorts International, had spoken about plans to expand in Asia.

Genting Singapore operates Resorts World Sentosa, an integrated resort on the Sentosa island, off the southern coast of Singapore. The key attractions at Resorts World Sentosa include a casino, the Universal Studios Singapore theme park, the Adventure Cove Waterpark, as well as the Singapore Oceanarium, which is the world’s second largest oceanarium. 

Mergers and Acquisitions

Singapore’s Ascott to Acquire Serviced Apartment Company Oakwood

3 months ago

Singapore-based Ascott is buying global serviced apartment provider Oakwood Worldwide from Mapletree Investments, increasing its global portfolio by 81 properties and about 15,000 units.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is set to be completed in the third quarter of 2022, after which 8,500 Oakwood operational units are expected to immediately contribute to Ascott’s recurring fee income streams.

Ascott parent company CapitaLand Investment expects the acquisition to take the serviced apartment operator’s global presence to more than 150,000 units in about 900 properties across more than 200 cities in 39 countries.

With Oakwood coming onboard, Ascott is confident of achieving its target of 160,000 units globally ahead of 2023.

Following the acquisition, the new markets that would be added to the Ascott portfolio include Cheongju in South Korea; Zhangjiakou and Qingdao in China; Dhaka in Bangladesh as well as Washington D.C.

Mapletree acquired Oakwood in February 2017.

Other Ascott takeovers include Quest Apartment Hotels in 2017. In the same year, Ascott invested in Synergy Global Housing, a corporate housing provider in the U.S. In 2018, Ascott acquired Indonesian hotel operator Tauzia Hotel Management to enter the mid-scale business hotel segment.

Business Travel

Singapore Sees Business Travel on the Rise Once Again

5 months ago

In April, Singapore reopened its borders to vaccinated travelers. Since then, corporate travel agency CWT said that Singapore has seen the highest peaks of business travel since early 2020, according to The Straits Times.


“Mr. Akshay Kapoor, head of sales for Asia-Pacific at CWT, said outbound bookings from Singapore are up fivefold compared with the beginning of this year, while inbound bookings are up by nearly threefold.”

–Straits Times

Read the Article on the Straits Times

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