New Zealand tourism industry reaches significant milestone

Devdiscourse | April 11, 2019

The vision for New Zealand to have the world's most sustainable tourism industry has reached a significant milestone.The Tourism Sustainability Commitment challenges individual businesses to operate more sustainably, and now over 1000 tourism businesses have made the pledge.Tourism Industry Aotearoa launched the TSC at the end of 2017, with the aim of seeing every New Zealand tourism businesscommitted to sustainability by 2025.To get some real impetus behind the initiative, an aspirational goal was set to sign up 1000 businesses by the end of March 2019. TIA is proud to announce the TSC community has now exceeded that target.

Spotlight

Latin America has developed as a dynamic region for business travel with both internal growth and expansion of globally consolidated programs. But successful travel management in this area of more than 20 countries depends on careful navigation of key issues, among them cultural nuances, payment, regulations, supplier sourcing, and technology.

Spotlight

Latin America has developed as a dynamic region for business travel with both internal growth and expansion of globally consolidated programs. But successful travel management in this area of more than 20 countries depends on careful navigation of key issues, among them cultural nuances, payment, regulations, supplier sourcing, and technology.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

BRAEMAR HOTELS & RESORTS ANNOUNCES AGREEMENT TO ACQUIRE DORADO BEACH, A RITZ-CARLTON RESERVE

Braemar Hotels & Resorts Inc | December 28, 2021

Braemar Hotels & Resorts Inc. (NYSE: BHR) ("Braemar" or the "Company") today announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the 96-room Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve in Dorado, Puerto Rico (the "Property"). In addition, the Company is also acquiring the income stream attributable to fourteen luxury residential units adjacent to the Property that participate in a rental management program. The acquisition is expected to close on or prior to February 1, 2022, subject to certain customary closing conditions. Because the acquisition is subject to certain customary closing conditions, the Company can give no assurance that the transaction will be consummated by such date or at all. "The acquisition of Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve is an opportunity for us to acquire one of the most iconic luxury assets in the Americas As the first Ritz-Carlton Reserve in the Americas and one of only five Ritz-Carlton Reserve properties worldwide, this unique property fits perfectly with our strategy of owning high RevPAR luxury hotels and resorts and further diversifies our portfolio." -Richard J. Stockton, Braemar's President and Chief Executive Officer. With its premier beachfront location on the North coast of Puerto Rico, the Property is situated within Dorado Beach Resort, a 1,900-acre master planned community in one of the most sought after residential real estate markets in both Puerto Rico as well as the United States. In addition to the amenities of the self-contained Dorado Beach community, the resort also benefits from its location within the town of Dorado. Dorado is an upscale suburb of San Juan featuring many restaurants, retail outlets, and other amenities and leisure activities in the surrounding area. Additionally, the town is 20 miles from Old San Juan and 22 miles from Luis Muñoz Marin International Airport, making it very accessible from the capital city. Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve was opened in 2012 and underwent an extensive $78 million renovation in 2018. It has 96 luxurious and spacious rooms, including 12 suites, that average 1,288 sq. ft. in size. The hotel offers an array of amenities, including the award-winning, full-service, 5-acre Spa Botanico, and three food and beverage outlets (in addition to in-room dining). The Property also boasts the acclaimed COA Restaurant, over 4,800 sq. ft. of meeting space, and an infinity pool with direct access to the beach. Additionally, the surrounding Dorado Beach residential development contains several other amenities that guests of the Ritz-Carlton Reserve can access during their stay, including: 2.5 miles of pristine beachfront, the TPC Dorado Beach Golf Club with two 18-hole Championship golf courses, a Tennis Center with five Har-Tru clay courts offering lessons and clinics for all skill levels, a state-of-the-art fitness center, the Encanto Pool, "The Watermill" – an expansive water park ideal for kids and families, three additional food and beverage outlets, as well as Dorado Farms – a 500-acre site including skeet shooting, equestrian center and culinary offerings – that is currently under construction. While not included in the Property's fee simple collateral, the acquisition includes the income from 14 additional residential units, ranging in size from 2,200 to 6,600 sq. ft., which are part of a rental management program. Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve has been the recipient of the following awards: AAA Five Diamond Award – 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020 Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Award - Hotel – 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020 Forbes Travel Guide Five Star Award – Spa Botanico – 2017, 2020 Conde Nast Traveler - Reader's Choice Awards 2019 – Top 50 Resorts in the Caribbean - #1 Conde Nast Traveler - Reader's Choice Awards 2019 – Top 50 Resorts in the World - #14 Travel + Leisure – World's Best Award – 2016 US News & World Report – Best Caribbean Hotel - #1 - 2020 Golf Magazine – Top 100 Resorts in North America 2019/2020 – Best for Luxury - #5 Wine Enthusiast – Best 100 Restaurants – COA - 2019 The total consideration for the acquisition is $186.6 million ($1.7 million per key, inclusive of the residential units in the rental program). The acquisition will be funded with approximately $104 million of cash, six million shares of Common Stock, and the assumption of a $54 million mortgage loan. No additional equity will be issued to fund the cash portion of the consideration. The cash portion of the consideration will be funded from available excess cash. The purchase price for Dorado Beach, a Ritz-Carlton Reserve represents, based on forecasted financial results for 2021, a capitalization rate of 9.8% on hotel net operating income of $18.2 million and a 10.2x hotel EBITDA multiple, according to the Company's preliminary estimates based on unaudited operating financial data provided by the seller. The Company expects to realize a stabilized yield of approximately 8% on its investment in the next three to five years. On a trailing 12-month basis as of November 30, 2021, the Property achieved RevPAR of $1,129, with 57% occupancy and an average daily rate (ADR) of $1,968, according to unaudited operating financial data provided by the seller.

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BUSINESS TRAVEL

Hopper Secures $175 Million Growth Investment Led By GPI Capital

Hopper | August 18, 2021

Hopper is announcing that it has completed a $175 million Series G financing led by GPI Capital with participation from Glade Brook Capital, WestCap, Goldman Sachs Growth and Accomplice as the company emerges from the pandemic stronger than ever. As the travel industry continues to rebound, Hopper has demonstrated significant outperformance with its category-leading mobile-only marketplace, delivering value to customers and supply partners with the company's proprietary suite of fintech offerings. Hopper has over 60 million downloads, consistently ranks as one of the most downloaded travel apps, and now has a larger air travel market share in North America than it did before the pandemic (source: MIDT) along with a growing suite of API-enabled solutions for its B2B initiative. Based on its current run rate, Hopper is pacing towards 330% revenue growth compared to last year and it has already surpassed its pre-pandemic revenue peak from Q1 2020 by over 100%. Product roll-outs have been delivered over an increasingly diversified mix of air, hotel and car rental bookings with the company's fintech offerings now representing a majority of its revenue. Whether it's pricing volatility or avoiding trip disruptions, Hopper's fintech offerings aim to address every pain point in the customer journey while driving conversion, repeat purchases, and profitability. Earlier in the year, Hopper announced that it was launching a B2B initiative called Hopper Cloud. Through this partnership program, any travel provider – airlines, online travel agencies, meta-search companies, travel agencies, etc. – can integrate and seamlessly distribute Hopper's fintech or agency content. Additionally, Hopper Cloud offers white-label travel portals for companies that aspire to sell travel with a differentiated consumer experience and offering. By leveraging its vast data assets, Hopper takes on all financial risk as its AI is able to dynamically price each fintech offering on a real-time basis at scale. "The success of our fintech offerings demonstrate that travelers are willing to pay for flexibility and assurance as they resume traveling again," said Frederic Lalonde, CEO and Co-Founder of Hopper. "We feel strongly that our fintech offerings through Hopper Cloud can help supercharge the travel industry's recovery by introducing a totally unique revenue stream for other brands. In fact, if all travel distribution channels offered our fintech, it could increase the total consumer spend for the sector by $200 billion annually. We are excited to be partnering with GPI and their distinguished track record of supporting iconic consumer internet companies. We welcome Khai to the board as we execute on a roadmap for sustained growth over the long term." Khai Ha, Managing Partner at GPI Capital, commented "Hopper has created a large market opportunity with unique fintech products for the travel industry that applies an entirely differentiated and attractive business model in which we are excited to work with Fred and the leadership team to accelerate the flywheel. The company emerged from a challenging period for the industry, bolstering its technology capabilities, customer service and its opportunity set with a stronger, durable foundation. We are thrilled to be a partner in this category-defining story." The funds will be used to accelerate the company's growth across several fronts including customer support. Following a year of unprecedented customer support requests, Hopper has scaled its customer support team by 200% and developed several self-serve automation tools so that 60% of customer support requests are now resolved instantly. Hopper is hiring an additional 500 employees, of which 300 of them are focused on customer service. The company is actively looking to acqui-hire other teams in travel, data science, or engineering-heavy startups to introduce new product offerings and fuel international expansion. Hopper has had recent success integrating the teams of Journy and Mowgli, which will accelerate entry into new travel categories such as home rentals and regional expansion to Europe. Kirkland & Ellis LLP and McCarthy Tétrault LLP acted as legal counsel to GPI Capital. About Hopper Hopper is the world's fastest-growing mobile-first travel marketplace. By leveraging massive amounts of data and machine learning, the company has developed several unique fintech solutions that help customers save money and travel better. Through its B2B initiative, Hopper Cloud, the company is syndicating its fintech solutions, infrastructure, and agency content. Whether it's pricing volatility or trip disruptions, Hopper's proprietary suite of fintech solutions address every pain point in the customer journey while driving conversion, repeat purchases, and profitability. About GPI Capital GPI Capital is an alternative investment firm specializing in leading growth equity investments in technology, consumer and industrial companies. GPI focuses on identifying high quality businesses looking to accelerate growth and execute on transformational opportunities with an engaged and value-add partner

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AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS

Croatia Airlines and Sabre Announces Airline's Successful Technology Migration of Real-Time Revenue Optimization Solution

Sabre Corporation | November 20, 2020

Croatia Airlines and Saber Corporation, the software and technology organization that controls the worldwide travel industry, declares the carrier's fruitful innovation movement to Saber Revenue Optimizer, Saber's driving income advancement arrangement. Considering the progressing COVID-19 pandemic, the requesting venture work was done essentially distantly, with the genuine innovation execution and preparing took care of basically. Last year, the two accomplices declared the Croatian banner transporter's move up to Revenue Optimizer, to empower the aircraft to adopt a 360-degree strategy to determining, breaking down, and streamlining its income streams. The arrangement gives constant perceivability into the complete income for each flight, each geological region and each takeoff date and assists break with bringing down information storehouses that may exist across aircraft frameworks.

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