5 things to know: 28 September 2017
5 things to know: 28 September 2017
28 SEPTEMBER 2017 9:58 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Aprirose acquires UK’s QHotels portfolio for £525m
  • Trump administration releases tax reform proposal
  • Starwood Capital completes 17 sales in £200m deal
  • Eclipse, Hurricane Harvey spur August US demand growth
  • Software glitch causes delays at airports worldwide

Aprirose acquires QHotels portfolio: London-based real estate investment company Aprirose acquired the 26-hotel QHotels portfolio for a reported £525m ($705.7 million), in what The Telegraph is reporting as “the biggest deal for U.K. hotels this year.”

Bain Capital Credit and Canyon Partners have owned the portfolio since 2014, according to the article. Prior to that, it was part of the Irish Banking Resolution Corporation’s Project Rock, a non-performing loan portfolio associated with the Irish financial crisis.

QHotels properties are located across the U.K. and are individually branded. The Telegraph reports that Aprirose appointed Redefine BDL Hotels to manage the 26 hotels.

Trump administration releases tax reform proposal: President Donald Trump’s administration has produced a tax reform plan that includes numerous tax cuts for individuals and businesses, The New York Times reports, and it could be “the most sweeping changes to the federal tax code in decades.”

Part of the plan calls for dropping the corporate tax rate from 35% to 20%, the newspaper reports, as well as set a tax rate of 25% for pass-through businesses. It would also limit deductibility for corporate expenses while allowing businesses to immediately expense their business investments to some degree.

The plan would transform the current worldwide tax system to a territorial tax system, which in theory would mean multinational companies would not be taxed on overseas earning, according to the article. Republicans plan to impose a tax on foreign profits to prevent tax-base erosion, and there would be a one-time repatriation tax.

Starwood Capital completes 17 sales in £200m deal: Principal Hotel Company, owned by Starwood Capital, has sold 17 properties and is in the process of selling another three by the end of the year for a total of £200 million ($268 million), according to a news release.

The assets sold include Gorse Hill near Woking, Kenwood Hall in Sheffield, New Place in Southampton, The Oxford Witney Hotel and Warbrook House in Hampshire. The “variety of buyers” were overseas investors, U.K.-based investment funds and high-net-worth individuals, the release states.

Of the three remaining, the Theobalds Estate in Cheshunt and the Wychwood Park in Crewe are being marketed, and the third is under offer, according to the news release.

Eclipse, Hurricane Harvey spur August U.S. demand growth: In the latest edition of Freitag’s 5, Jan Freitag, SVP of lodging insights at STR, writes that U.S. hotels in August sold 113 million roomnights, an increase of 3 million roomnights compared to August 2016. The solar eclipse and Hurricane Harvey were two major drivers of demand for hotels. STR is the parent company of Hotel News Now.

Group occupancy, however, fell 4.7% year over year while transient occupancy grew 1.2%, Freitag writes. This points to supply growth and stagnant group demand for higher-end hotels, as average daily rate growth was minimal for both group and transient segments.
“Group ADR growth is at its lowest level since January 2012,” Freitag writes. “In the last five years, there has never been a month where group ADR percent change was this low. Is this a sign of things to come? Let’s hope not.”

Software glitch causes delays at airports worldwide: Would-be passengers at Gatwick, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Melbourne and other airports have reported problems checking in, the BBC reports. Others have reported issues booking through different airlines.

A software management company told the BBC it found a “network issue” and was restoring services, according to the article. Photos accompanying the article show long lines of passengers waiting to check in at several airports around the world.

Compiled by Bryan Wroten.

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