|Daily Mail, London|
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Sep. 10, 2004 - InterContinental Hotels has put the for sale sign in front of another 76 properties to raise UKpound 1.3 billion.
That is on top of other sales and completed disposals worth UKpound 2.2 billion since its demerger from pubs group Six Continents last year.
InterContinental has chosen to concentrate on managing hotels and developing franchises. Most of the hotels to be sold are in the UK.
Some analysts worry that, as a support services company, InterContinental will fail to gain from any cyclical upturn in the industry.
InterContinental also announced plans to return UKpound 750m to shareholders, via buybacks and a special dividend. Interim profits rose 55 percent to UKpound 143m.
Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal is in advanced negotiations to buy London's Savoy Hotel and Simpson's-in-the-Strand restaurant for more than UKpound 200m. Irish investor Quinlan Private paid UKpound 750m for the Savoy Group and will retain hotels including The Connaught and Claridges.
-----UKpound preceding a numeral refers to the United Kingdom's pound sterling. To see more of the Daily Mail and the Financial Mail on Sunday, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.thisismoney.com.
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