BUDGET HOTEL CRAZE ibis Singapore Transaction
First we had the Asian low cost airline carriers like AirAsia, Tiger, and Jetstar flood into the market place and now comes the budget hotels with ACCOR's Ibis, IHG's Holiday Inn Express and Tunehotels.com.
Back of substantially lower investment costs, operating efficiency and a growing segment of regional business the ibis Bencoolen was a slam dunk for US institutional giant LaSalle Investment Management (LIM).
As part of the fund strategy to gear up project and then exit the Singapore property which has been a huge hit with travelers has now been put on the transaction market and expectations are that the 538 key hotel will capture a significant upside on sale.
Here in Phuket many industry players remember LaSalle's banner conversion of the Karon Villa Resort into a Crowne Plaza and subsequent sale for in excess of USD 100 million a few years back to Kingdom Hotel Investments. The property was subsequently rebranded as a Moevenpick back of the new owner's stake in the chain.
ACCOR's ibis has two properties on the island in Patong and Kata which are owned by the substantial Thai hotel group Erawan.