IHG Hotel Brands Entering New Locations, Growing At Record Pace Across Asia Pacific
* InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express expansion includes entry into new and emerging destinations
* 80 new hotels signed during past year in Asia Pacific, averaging one hotel every five days
* Growth supported by continuous investments in gaining customer insight, ensuring quality and effectively driving hotel returns
Hong Kong. - IHG’s (InterContinental Hotels Group’s) portfolio of hotel brands has been growing at record pace across Asia Pacific during the past year, accompanied by an equally strong growth in the group’s regional support infrastructure. All four of the IHG brands currently present in this part of the world - InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express - continue to outperform. The current growth momentum is especially strong in the key markets of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Japan and India. Some of the brands within the IHG portfolio are also set to appear for the first time in strategic new locations such as Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Maldives, Bangalore, Melbourne and Adelaide.
The group has a development pipeline of more than 120 hotels and 40,000 rooms across Asia Pacific. Over 80 hotels have been signed over the past one year period - an average of one signing every five days. More than two thirds of these signings are for new-build hotels with the rest being conversions of existing properties. Close to 70% of the hotels will be located in the PRC, Japan and India, in line with IHG’s global strategy of building the hotel industry’s strongest operating system, focused on the biggest markets and segments where scale really counts.
IHG has also been growing its support capability in key regional locations. Commented Tony South, acting chief executive of IHG Asia Pacific, “As we continue to grow our network of hotels across the region, we need to put equal emphasis on ensuring the long-term success of the hotels, which in turn ensures better returns for our owners. As a result, we have doubled the number of employees based in our corporate offices in Shanghai, Sydney, Singapore, New Delhi and Tokyo during the past two years. This includes beefing up critical functions such as talent development, hotel openings, design and engineering, brand management, sales and revenue management.”
He added that in order to address the huge demand for trained hospitality talent across the region, the company has launched a number of industry-leading talent development initiatives during the past twelve months. Key among these was the launch of the IHG Academy in Shanghai last year. Designed to identify and groom staff for IHG’s hotels and develop the future talent pool, the IHG Academy was recently expanded to another three cities across the PRC. IHG partners with leading institutions in each of these locations to help deliver the programmes.
In another industry first, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, the group’s upscale brand for meetings and interactions, recently introduced a unique accreditation programme for its meeting directors, in partnership with Cornell-Nanyang Institute of Hospitality Management. This programme sets a new benchmark for meeting services providers and provides enhanced career development opportunities for Crowne Plaza employees.
At the same time, IHG has invested heavily in research aimed at garnering customer insight to help take their brands in the right direction. The company conducted one of the largest ever hotel research studies, talking to 15,000 consumers across the globe. The insight gained is now being used to help differentiate the company’s brands through innovation, communication and an improved booking experience.
IHG’s Priority Club Rewards (PCR), the biggest hotel loyalty programme in the world with 33 million members, has been growing particularly well in Asia Pacific. The number of regional PCR members has tripled to about three million over the last 3 years, averaging growth of about 39% annually.
Globally, IHG is opening one hotel a day around the world and signing two hotels a day. The company now has a total of more than 1,400 hotels (over 188,000 rooms) in the development pipeline and expects to exceed its target of 50,000-60,000 net and organic room additions by the end of 2008.
Key brand highlights:
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts
* Luxury hotel brand with 34 hotels (12,000 rooms) in Asia Pacific. 24 hotels (8,400) rooms in development pipeline.
* Will enter several key, emerging destinations for the first time, including Melbourne, Australia; Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi, Vietnam; and Qingdao, PRC.
* The only luxury hotel brand to have two hotels offering direct access to the 2008 Olympics - InterContinental Beijing North is steps from the Olympic stadium and InterContinental Qingdao is located within the Olympic sailing venue.
* Two co-branded hotels launched April 2007 in Tokyo, Japan, as a result of the hotel operating joint venture with All Nippon Airways (ANA). Two more ANA InterContinental resorts to be launched in Okinawa in 2008 and 2009.
* Additional InterContinental Resorts will launch in Hua Hin, Thailand; Huizhou and Sanya, PRC; Danang, Vietnam; and Okinawa, Japan. These new launches will join existing InterContinental resorts in Bali and French Polynesia.
Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts
* Upscale hotel brand with 51 hotels (16,500 rooms) open across Asia Pacific; 39 hotels (14,000 rooms) in development pipeline.
* Focuses on business meetings and social interactions and is the fastest growing hotel brand in its segment in Asia Pacific and the US.
* In PRC, more than 40% of the hotels in the IHG development pipeline will be Crowne Plaza hotels.
* Six ANA Crowne Plaza co-branded hotels to launch later this year in Japan as part of the IHG ANA hotel operating joint venture. Hotels are located across the country, in Narita, Kanazawa, Toyama, Hiroshima, Okinawa and Chitose.
* Crowne Plaza hotels will enter markets such as Hanoi, Vietnam; Hangzhou, PRC and Adelaide, Australia for the first time. The brand is also making a re-entry into Singapore with Crowne Plaza Changi Airport opening in April 2008.
Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts
* World’s most recognized hotel brand. 89 hotels (23,850 rooms) in Asia Pacific and 40 hotels (12,000 rooms) in the development pipeline.
* The leading mid-scale hotel brand in Asia Pacific and China. Voted best mid market hotel brand in Asia Pacific and the world by readers of Business Traveller Asia Pacific every year from 2001-2007.
* Expected to grow significantly in India, with six of 10 upcoming IHG hotels earmarked as Holiday Inns.
* Maldives, Bangalore and Pattaya will see the opening of their first Holiday Inn hotels.
Holiday Inn Express
* Ten Holiday Inn Express hotels (3,000 rooms) currently operating in China, Hong Kong and Japan and close to 20 hotels in the development pipeline.
* One of the fastest growing hotel brands in the hotel industry, with one hotel opening every four days somewhere in the world.
* The brand offers a smart, innovative and refreshing hotel choice for business and leisure, with relevant facilities, focused services, consistent quality and stylish design. It is positioned between full service four star hotels and budget hotels.
* The Holiday Inn Express China franchising programme was launched in 2007, targeted at hotel owners who share IHG’s vision for the brand and possess the necessary skills and resources to operate a portfolio of hotels with IHG’s support.
* Holiday Inn Express plans to expand its Asia Pacific presence to Singapore and Bangkok.
IHG Asia Pacific
+65 9829 0310
IHG Greater China
+86 1360 172 9464
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