Wyndham Sets Split
Hotel, timeshare units to separate
Wyndham Worldwide said it plans to spin off the company's hotel business, resulting in the creation of two separate, publicly traded companies.
Wyndham Hotel Group, with headquarters in Parsippany, New Jersey, will become a publicly traded, pure-play hotelier with a portfolio of more than 8,100 properties operating under 18 brands. Wyndham Vacation Ownership, which is based in Orlando, Florida, will become the world's largest publicly traded timeshare company, with a portfolio of over 220 resorts throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, South America and the South Pacific.
Wyndham officials say the transaction—which is subject to final approval by the existing company’s board, but won’t require an OK by shareholders—is expected to increase the fit and focus and strategic flexibility of the two post-spin companies, allow each to maintain a sharper focus on its core business and growth opportunities, facilitate future capital raising, and position each to be better able to make the changes necessary to respond to developments in its markets.
"We have spent the past three years on a transformation focused on improving the quality and awareness of our hotel brands, moving our legacy hotel and central systems to cloud-based technology on an unprecedented scale, and building one of the top-rated hotel loyalty programs in the world," says Geoff Ballotti, who is currently ceo of Wyndham Hotel Group and will serve as president and ceo of the as-yet-unnamed new hotel unit. "We are excited about moving forward as one of the largest pure-play hotel portfolios anchored by iconic hotel brands in the economy and midscale segments. With a proven asset-light, fee-for-service model and attractive opportunities to grow and further diversify our brand portfolio, we are well positioned to drive value for our shareholders."
Wyndham’s hotel brands include: Baymont Inns & Suites, Days Inn; Dolce Hotels and Resorts, Hawthorne Suites, Howard Johnson, Knights Inn, Microtel, Ramada, Super 8, Travelodge, TRYP, Wingate, Wyndham, Wyndham Garden and Wyndham Grand.
The split is slated for completion in the first half of next year. Wyndham’s move follows similar spin-offs in recent years by Marriott Intl. and Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc.