Global hospitality major Wyndham Hotel Group is looking to add 40 new hotels in India by 2020 as part of its expansion plans in the country. The company currently has 35 operational hotels with 3,258 rooms under the Ramada, Ramada Encore, Howard Johnson and Days brands in India. “We aim to have 75 operational hotels in India by 2020 and plan to further expand our footprint in other high potential countries in the region by exploring new opportunities,” Deepika Arora, Eurasia Regional Vice President, Wyndham Hotel Group.
Emphasising that India is a key market for the Group, she said the company is also planning to introduce some new brands in the coming years such as Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham, Wyndham Grand and Wyndham in India. Wyndham Grand is scheduled to open in Bengaluru in 2020. Elaborating on the growth strategy, Arora said, “In India, as part of our development strategy, we look to provide global connectivity and brand recognition with further expansion into secondary and tertiary cities as well as leisure destinations.” The company’s upcoming openings will add leisure locations like Kasauli and Lonavala, pilgrim destinations like Tirupati and Dwarka in Gujarat and business locations like Ghaziabad, Trivandrum, Bhubaneswar among others, she added.
Wyndham Hotel Group has two global business models but it primarily follows franchise models for its hotel brands although in many markets, the company also operates properties under management contract. In India, the company has largely grown through the franchise model, she added. “The franchise model has worked well for us and within a short time frame, we grew in India from eight hotels in 2010 to 35 operational hotels to date in 2018,” Arora said.
When asked about the segment that could be a major growth driver for the hospitality major, Arora said: “We are concentrating on the mid-market segment in the country as we see an opportunity for immense growth in this segment.” There has been a shift with an increasing number of corporate travellers opting for mid-market hotels along with India’s growing middle class with disposable income who are eager to travel and explore, she added. “Our goal is to ensure that wherever across India or the region that travellers want to go, they will find a Wyndham Hotel Group hotel to meet their needs and their budget,” Arora said. Wyndham Hotel Group currently has over 8,100 hotels with more than 7,08,500 rooms in 78 countries across 20 brands.