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AccorHotels has signed an agreement to purchase an 85% stake in Louisville, Kentucky-based 21c Museum Hotels, entering a new territory for the Paris-based company.

21c, which is known for pairing contemporary art museums with boutique hotels and restaurants, will join the MGallery collection of hotels and mark that brand’s entrance into North America. Inclusion in the soft brand will allow 21c to leverage AccorHotels’ distribution platform. AccorHotels will also offer 21c development support and increased sales and marketing prowess. 21c currently has 11 properties open and three more in the pipeline in Des Moines, Nashville and Oklahoma City.

The $51 million deal includes a potential earn-out payment, and no real estate is included in the acquisition. 21c co-founders Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson will hold a 15% stake. The company’s current president and ceo Craig Greenberg will remain at the helm with headquarters staying in Louisville. The transaction is expected to close during the third quarter of this year.

The move is just another step forward in AccorHotels’ acquisition plan, which has been on a tear this year. In May, the company inked a deal to acquire Atton Hoteles, which operates 11 properties across Chile, Peru, Colombia and Florida. Just before that, AccorHotels announced it would acquire Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts for $582.61 million. In April, the hotelier signed a strategic agreement to acquire a 50% stake in South Africa-based Mantis Group. Additionally, the company’s $1.2 billion buy of Melbourne-based Mantra Group was finalized in May.


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