Tag Archives: Founder

Holiday Inn Express expands India presence with multiple hotel openings across cities

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has announced the opening of seven more Holiday Inn Express hotels from the IHG-SAMHI partnership. The hotels are spread across Pune, Hyderabad, Nashik, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru. With the latest announcement, 10 Holiday Inn Express hotels from the IHG–SAMHI partnership are now open across the country. IHG and SAMHI entered a partnership in 2017 to rebrand 14 hotels (approximately 2000 rooms, operating and under construction) in India to Holiday Inn Express hotels. All hotels in the portfolio were closed while they were being refurbished and upgraded with the latest design directives, to ensure the portfolio is fully representative of the Holiday Inn Express brand globally. The new Holiday Inn Express hotels are located strategically providing easy accessibility to local shopping centres, tourist attractions and business hubs. Promising unparalleled comfort and convenience to the guests, all newly-opened hotels offer well designed, contemporary rooms with a range of in-room amenities, service culture and feature the brand’s signature ‘Great Room’, a dynamic space to socialise as well as relax and unwind. Vivek Bhalla, Regional Vice President, SWA, IHG said, “The Holiday Inn Express brand has gained tremendous momentum in the country and we have also made significant progress towards our commitment to strengthen our mid-scale portfolio in India. We are confident that all newly opened Holiday Inn Express hotels in partnership with SAMHI, will successfully cater to the needs of the modern business and leisure travellers, across cities.” Ashish Jakhanwala, Founder, MD & CEO, SAMHI, added, “We began this journey with IHG in 2017 when we signed an agreement for 14 Holiday Inn Express hotels in India. With the opening of 10 Holiday Inn Express hotels from the portfolio, across seven …

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MakeMyTrip expects 70% of its revenue from hotels, accommodations by 2022

MakeMyTrip said it is looking at the hotels and accommodations segment to contribute around 70 per cent to its overall revenue by the end of 2022. Currently, hotels and accommodations account for around 54 per cent of the company’s total revenue. “By the end of 2022, 70 per cent of our revenue will come from the hotels and accommodations segment,” Deep Kalra, Founder and Group CEO, MakeMyTrip. Currently, around 33 per cent of revenue comes from air travel and the rest is roughly from redBus, travel insurance and experiences, he added. “Going forward, the hotels and accommodations will contribute a bigger share of revenue, as there is still a lot of headroom in hotels. Still, only around 15 per cent of hotels are booked online, so there is a big market to be tapped,” Kalra said. On the trend of more Indians opting for overseas travel, he said, “The focus area for us and where Indians are going right now is overseas. Middle class has the money and is travelling overseas as it is aspirational.” The growth in international travel will be higher and it will grow faster than the domestic segment, he added. The company has recently posted its third-quarter results with a growth of over 30 per cent. When asked about the growth road map, Kalra said, “We are looking to moving on to twin path of growth and at the same time of reduction of losses.” He, however, did not provide any future guidance on growth numbers. Source: PTI

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Global Destinations showcases 12 partners at four-city roadshow

Global Destinations is organising a four-city roadshow in the country in order to strengthen relations with the travel fraternity and various private players. Having kicked off in Delhi, the roadshow will travel to Ahmedabad, Bengaluru and Chennai. Pranav Kapadia, Founder & Director, Global Destinations, shared, “We have got 12 partners with for the roadshow, which includes five properties from Bintan Resorts and partners from Greece, Vietnam and Bulgaria. We’ve got  Swiss-Belhotel International from Bali, a partner from United states and Air New Zealand from New Zealand. We have invited very select agents for the roadshow. The idea is to either target agents who have the potential as we have not been getting the required support from them or look at agents who have been supporting Global Destinations and haven’t met the partners.”  

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Lemon Tree Hotels & Warburg Pincus enter into JV to form a co-living platform for millennials

Lemon Tree Hotels has formed a joint venture (JV) with an affiliate of Warburg Pincus, a global private equity firm focused on growth investing, to create a co-living platform. The JV marks Lemon Tree Hotel’s entry into a new business segment focusing on the development of institutional-grade rental housing accommodation serving both students and young working professionals across major educational clusters and key office markets in India. Following Warburg Pincus’ successful partnerships in China and Hong Kong, this investment represents the first co-living platform which the firm has backed in India. An affiliate of Warburg Pincus and Lemon Tree Hotels will hold 68 per cent and 30 per cent stake, respectively in the JV, with the balance 2 per cent to be held by Patanjali Keswani. The JV partners will initially invest Rs 1,500 crore in equity over a period of time followed by an additional infusion of Rs 1,500 crore in equity at the option of the partners, to develop rental housing projects through a combination of greenfield purpose-built properties, refurbishment of existing under-managed/stressed commercial and residential assets taken on lease/acquisition basis as well as management of existing for-rent accommodation projects. The platform aims to provide affordable and conveniently located co-living spaces for students and young professionals, who are increasingly looking to be part of a vibrant community with like-minded individuals. Patanjali (Patu) Keswani, Founder, Chairman and Managing Director, Lemon Tree Hotels, said, “We are delighted to once again partner with Warburg Pincus at an early stage of this exciting new business opportunity, which will allow Lemon Tree Hotels to move into a segment which is nascent but closely aligned to our existing target customers and which is expected to …

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‘The Postcard Hotel’ launched with three luxury hotels in Goa

Set to redefine the luxury hospitality scenario, ‘The Postcard Hotel’ has been launched by its Founder and CEO, Kapil Chopra, at a press conference held in Delhi. The Postcard Hotel is a brand of unique, intimate luxury hotels in India and the world. Transformative experiences and local community are at the heart of The Postcard Hotel’s offering. “What I wanted to do with The Postcard Hotel, is make luxury hotels for the modern audience but bring back the romance and charm of holidays. We wanted it to be rich in its experience but also wanted it to be simple. We believe guests want to stay in a place where the hotel does the thinking for them, where they get the simple things right, yet offer fantastic spaces for them to relax, meet like-minded people and experience local culture. This is why, we handpick our locations and our hotels, so that guests have a different experience whether they are in Goa or overlooking the snow-clad Himalayas,” stated Chopra. In an unprecedented move, The Postcard Hotel has announced the opening of three luxury hotels on the opening day, ready to receive guests that are spread across unique neighbourhoods in Goa – The Postcard Moira, nestled in one of the four heritage villages of Goal; The Postcard Velha, surrounded by 300 acres of virgin coconut plantations in old Goa; and further south, The Postcard Cuelim, that houses a 350-year-old chapel. The brand is committed to building and operating 50 hotels in the next five years. In the next 12 to 18 months, the brand will be present in Uttarakhand, Karnataka, Dhauladhar Mountain Range, Sikkim, Darjeeling, Sundarbans and Kanha.  

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KSRTC users can now reserve bus tickets through AbhiBus

AbhiBus has bagged the online bus ticket reservation system project from the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC). The online system provides an option for users to reserve bus tickets on the official website of KSRTC. Doing it online gives users an opportunity to access booking and reserve their bus tickets 30 days in advance. AbhiBus will also deploy a user-friendly mobile app for KSRTC that can be used for reserving ticketing through their mobile phones. Kerala becomes the fifth state road transport corporation in the country that AbhiBus would be engaged with after Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh. Commenting on the engagement with KSRTC and the unique system for Sabarimala pilgrims, Sudhakar Reddy Chirra, Founder & CEO, AbhiBus said, “AbhiBus is the pioneer in the service of creating online bus ticket booking platforms for private bus operators and State RTCs in the country. Our success over the years and the wide reach we enjoy stands to testify the technological supremacy AbhiBus enjoys in the space we operate in. With the signing of the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation, AbhiBus now has its strong presence spread to all corners of South India.” In addition to the regular engagement with the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation, AbhiBus has deployed unique time-slot-based bus ticket reservation system for pilgrims visiting Sabarimala. KSRTC will use this unique system for selling bus tickets online for chain services operated between Nilakkal and Pamba for the convenience of pilgrims.  

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OYO announces new category — OYO Living meant for millennials

OYO has announced its entry into the long-term fully managed housing rentals – OYO Living, geared to provide upgraded living experiences at an affordable price for India’s growing population. Perfectly suited for the changing housing needs of India, OYO Living will offer a first-of-its-kind, end to end managed and high-quality living experience that eliminates the hassles of finding, accessing and managing everyday housing. These accommodations are easy to find and easier to live in, where all OYO Living residents can experience the benefits of shared spaces while enjoying financial independence. With this, OYO aims to become the leading brand in the long-term housing rental and accommodations business and the biggest provider of housing in India. At the time of launch, OYO Living will have 35+ live properties, with over 2000 beds in Noida, Gurgaon, Bangalore and Pune, targeted at millennials and young professionals. With most assets currently operating already resulting at full occupancy, OYO Living will aim to expand to the top 10 metros by the end of 2019 and will offer over 50,000 beds. Commenting on the launch, Ritesh Agarwal, CEO & Founder, OYO Hotels & Homes, said, “OYO Living represents our ongoing commitment to continue innovating and creating world-class stay experiences from India. With the launch of OYO Living, we are all set to offer something new while remaining true to our core mission of creating beautiful living spaces. This launch marks a key milestone as we embark on our journey towards becoming India’s biggest provider of housing, consolidating our position as a category innovator and leader.” Piloted in mid-2018, OYO Living offers residents fully managed independent residential units, inclusive of contracting, furnishing, cleaning, maintenance, and in-stay services.

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IATO brainstorms on key issues on the first day

With a day stacked with business sessions focusing on imperative issues and state presentations, the audience was treated with intense discussions on day one of the two-day convention in Vishakhapatnam. The day started with the conventional IATO Run for Responsible Tourism in the morning. The first session of the day aimed to highlighted the challenges of touching the ambitious milestone of 20 million foreign tourist arrivals within the next few years. The panelists also touched upon the ways in which this can be achieved. The second session brought together members of key hotel companies face to face with tour operators to discuss what both industries can do to help the other since it is getting harder and harder to do business, whether it is the hotels or the travel trade.  The following session had an all-women panel who spoke about their personal experiences that are evidence that India is a safe country. However, they did present ways in which the safety of women travellers could improve. The final panel discussion, moderated by Rajesh Mudgill, MD, Planet India Travels, deliberated on how to change one’s business to adapt to the changing mindset of today’s travellers. In between the state presentations and panel discussions, the audience also took advantage of individual presentations made by Nakul Anand, Chairman, FAITH; an informative session on how travel agents can use digital marketing by Avijit Arya, Founder, Internet Mogul.  

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OYO acquires wedding banquet company

OYO Hotels has announced the acquisition of wedding banquet company Weddingz.in to expand its playfield to real estate sector. Globally, the wedding industry has grown to become a $500 billion market and OYO’s sharp focus on global expansion will support its debut in disrupting these markets. Commenting on the development, Maninder Gulati, Chief Strategy Officer – OYO, said, “What this partnership facilitates is combining OYO’s capabilities of asset management and technology with the scale Weddingz.in offers in India’s fragmented $40bn weddings industry. The company has a healthy scale of managing 1,500-plus wedding events per quarter, with an inventory size of over 40 banquets spread across Mumbai and Delhi.’’ With more than 10 million marriages in India held annually, the segment holds immense potential for innovation, improvement and standardization of processes. “Weddingz.in is India’s largest banquet management company specialising in weddings led by an extremely ambitious founder Sandeep Lodha and his talented team and the value proposition they bring to the table via skills in managing weddings is clearly visible in their dominance and popularity.’’ added Maninder. Sandeep Lodha, Founder, Weddingz.in, commented, ‘’This alliance will work towards simplifying wedding planning for Indians while tapping the enormous opportunities this space offers.”    

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OYO enjoys robust business growth in China while continuing dominance in India

Expanding its presence in China in November 2017, OYO has grown its presence in the country by 50,000 exclusive rooms with a strong presence in cities including Hangzhou, Xian, Nanjing, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Shenzhen, Xiamen and Kunming among others. It recently launched its exclusive hotels in Hulunbeier City, Sanya City and Hainan Province. Commenting on the business performance, Ritesh Agarwal, Founder & CEO, OYO said, “We are thrilled with the response OYO Hotels has received in China. It is well-established that there is a great demand for good-quality accommodation among the 400 MM middle income people in the country. July was a milestone month where we added 25,000 rooms to our chain and look forward to achieving a similar feat in the coming months. It’s been a truly exciting journey for us and we believe that the innovation and R&D being offered in China will assist us and the mission globally.” With its unique business model, OYO works in close proximity with its hotel partners while ensuring a quality living experience to guests, promising benefits to both. In India, OYO has a 100,000-exclusive-rooms strong chain with a presence in over 160 cities with Malaysia and Nepal as the other two international destinations where the chain is present.

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