CEO: New name lifts Value Place image
CEO: New name lifts Value Place image
23 APRIL 2015 11:30 AM
Some customers were reluctant to stay with the chain in the past. The WoodSpring Suites name is designed to change that, said CEO Bruce Haase. 
LONG BEACH, California—Extended-stay brand Value Place has a new name and a new brand.
Company executives revealed during the Asian American Hotel Owners Association Annual Convention & Trade Show that the company has changed its name to WoodSpring Suites. It also is developing WoodSpring Suites Signature, a brand extension featuring a more upscale experience for guests. It wasn’t immediately clear whether there was a timeline in place for the new rollouts or what the cost to owners might be. 
During a webcast news conference, CEO Bruce Haase said a name change was essential for Value Place, which counts nearly 200 hotels across the United States. One of the primary goals for executives is to create a national, well-distributed brand and the new identity is a step in that process.
“Customers were reluctant to stay with us because of what our brand name communicated to them,” he said in discussing what company officials believe is a more “positive” name. 

Officials said the initial requirements to become a WoodSpring Suites are expected to cost approximately $150,000. All Value Place properties are expected to convert to WoodSpring Suites by 31 March 2016. The first WoodSpring Suites-branded hotel is anticipated to open during the fourth quarter this year.
Kyle Rogg, the company’s president and COO, said market research completed prior to the unveiling of the new name showed that customers approved of the change. Stay intent doubled when customers were shown the new name.
The new branding will open up a new customer segment for the company, Rogg said. “It will enable us to get into even more higher rated markets that previously were inaccessible.”
The WoodSpring Suites Signature product will introduce the company to less price-sensitive guests, the officials said.
“It appeals to existing guests, and it appeals to guests we can steal away from the competition,” Haase said. “It’s a gateway to the brand.”
The new, higher scale WoodSpring Suites Signature product will require some slight operational tweaking, Haase said. 
“There will be some slight modifications but nothing out of our wheelhouse,” he said.
For example, company properties previously provided guests with monthly housekeeping services. That will be increased to weekly housekeeping.
“It’s a bit of a re-launch of the company in a lot of ways,” he said. “We are going to bring this company to a whole new level.”

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