November 22, 2023
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Kimpton sold to UK hotel group in $430M deal, Miramar delayed


Kimpton Hotels & Restaurant Group, owner of the Canary Hotel and operator The Goodland in the Santa Barbara area, is under new ownership in a $430 million deal.

United Kingdom-based InterContinental Hotels Group announced it had agreed to acquire its state-side competition on Dec. 15.

The deal is touted as a move to accelerate growth of the new company’s brands in the U.S., particularly in Europe and Asia, where demand for boutique brands is on the rise.

With Kimpton now in IHG’s portfolio, the combined company has more than 200 open and in development hotels in 19 countries. Already among IHG’s South Coast assets are The Crown Plaza Ventura Beach and Hotel Indigo in Santa Barbara.

For it’s part Kimpton manages 62 hotels and resorts in the U.S., with 16 hotels in the pipeline. The company operates 71 hotel-based destination restaurants and bars.

According to IHG, the transaction will boost earnings in its first full year and achieve returns above IHG’s cost of capital in three years.

“The acquisition is another step in IHG’s well-established asset-light strategy of investing in high-quality growth, building on a strong track record of developing iconic global brands. We will use our scale, network of owner relationships, and powerful digital platforms to accelerate Kimpton’s growth both within the U.S. and internationally,” Richard Solomons, CEO of IHG said in a statement.

The transaction will be financed through existing cash resources and new debt facilities, and is expected to close during the first quarter of 2015 pending anti-trust clearance and Kimpton shareholder consent, according IHG.

Kimpton’s EBITDA, or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, is expected to be approximately $20 million this year, and IHG expects to grow Kimpton’s EBITDA to approximately $39 million by 2017 from the opening of hotels in the pipeline and savings on back office and technology cuts, according to a release.

“IHG is the ideal partner for Kimpton and has absolutely the right experience and specialist capabilities to help the business move to the next phase of rapid growth,” Kimpton CEO Mike Depatie said in a statement. ” As an owner of a significant number of Kimpton hotels through our real estate investment funds, I am committed to developing additional Kimpton hotels and I look forward to seeing Kimpton go from strength to strength as part of IHG.”

The Kimpton Real Estate Investment Funds, which are run by four existing Kimpton executives, expect to make future investments in Kimpton branded hotels. The funds own approximately 30 percent of Kimpton’s existing and pipeline properties and intend to raise additional money or financing to acquire, develop and renovate boutique hotels. As part of this investment platform, the funds expect work with the Kimpton brand going forward.

InterContinental told the Wall Street Journal that Depatie will leave his role as Kimpton CEO and instead focus on the real estate funds. Mike DeFrino, Kimpton’s chief operating officer, will become the new CEO.

According to Kimpton, the boutique hotel segment has been hospitality industry’s fastest growing over the last four years, with demand, supply and RevPAR growth for boutique hotels in the U.S. each significantly outperforming the industry overall.

Unhappy Camper

In an industry-related turn, the same day the Kimpton deal was announced, the Montecito Planning Commission voted to delay a decision on approving Los Angeles developer Rick Caruso’s Miramar Beach Resort & Bungalow project to a Jan. 21 meeting. Caruso and project supporters were upset at the commission’s decision, with Caruso saying he can’t afford to keep the project in development purgatory.

In a statement issued by Caruso Affiliated Dec. 16, the company said that is has worked for the past 18 months to redesign a smaller, more efficient project with fewer impacts on the community, but the firm is unsure if the project cant still become a reality.

“[Caruso Affiliated] are obviously very disappointed with the result, in particular with the apparent interest of some commissioners to seek significant changes to the project, which would result in months of further delay,” the statement reads. “[Caruso Affiliated] appreciate the support of so many in the community and are sorry their wishes were not heard. The result of yesterday’s meeting has now delayed our planned groundbreaking in June. We will take some time to consider whether there is still a viable path for building the Miramar hotel.”