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 Rezidor SAS Hospitality And Carlson Hotels
Worldwide Complete Strategic Agreement

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Brussels, Belgium and Minneapolis, MN, June 30, 2005 ----- Rezidor SAS Hospitality, the Brussels-based subsidiary of the SAS Group, today jointly announced with US-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide, that they have completed the strategic agreement, originally announced in March, 2005, which results in an enhancement of their long-time franchise partnership into a shareholder agreement.

Carlson Hotels has now acquired a 25 percent shareholding in Rezidor SAS from SAS Group in return for renegotiated commercial terms of the parties' current Master Franchise Agreement (MFA). The MFA is the agreement between Rezidor SAS and Carlson by which Rezidor manages Carlson Hotel brands in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). These brands have included Radisson SAS, Park Inn, Regent International Hotels and Country Inns & Suites.

Since the agreement was originally announced, the companies have moved forward to seek closer cooperation in  key business areas such as sales, distribution, marketing and communications.

Background

Rezidor SAS first signed an agreement with Carlson in 1994 for the first class Radisson brand. The combined brand, Radisson SAS, which was created from that MFA, has been the vehicle that has turned Rezidor SAS into one of the fastest growing hotel management companies in the world today.

The success of this initial Radisson SAS partnership then led Rezidor SAS and Carlson to sign a further multi-brand MFA agreement in 2002 that added three other Carlson brands to the Rezidor SAS portfolio - Regent, Park Inn and Country Inns & Suites. This has proven to be another significant  success that has seen the high volume mid-market brand Park Inn, grow from zero to over 60 properties in just two years in the EMEA region; while also facilitating the re-launch of the luxury brand Regent, with Rezidor SAS adding two new landmark hotels, in Berlin and Zagreb, to the global Regent portfolio.

As a result Rezidor SAS has grown from 29 Radisson SAS hotels, when the original agreement was signed in 1994, to now having in total 252 hotels open or under development.

This new deal has an option for Rezidor SAS to use the Carlson brands to 2052, an increase of twenty years on the previous agreement. It will now bring the two companies even closer together and allow for stronger brand alignment on a global basis.

The deal also gives Carlson two seats on the six-member board of Rezidor SAS.

SAS AB is the Nordic region's largest listed airline and travel group and the fourth-largest airline group in Europe, in terms of number of passengers and operating revenue. The SAS Group offers air transport and related services from its base in northern Europe. Scandinavian Airlines provides services within Scandinavia, to/from Europe, North America and Asia. Scandinavian Airlines is a founder member of the world's largest global airline alliance - Star Alliance. The Group also includes the airlines Spanair, Wideroes's Flyveselskap and Blue1 and the partly-owned airlines airBaltic and Estonian Air. The Group's business areas Airline Support Businesses and Airline Related Businesses include companies that support the airline operations. The Group also includes hotel operations with Rezidor SAS Hospitality. For more information please visit www.sasgroup.net.

Minneapolis-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide includes five hotel brands, totaling more than 895 locations in 68 countries. Hotel brands include: Regent International Hotels, one of the most respected brands in the luxury segment of the lodging industry; Radisson Hotels & Resorts®, one of the world's leading upscale hotel companies with more than 417 locations ; Park Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, positioned in the mid-scale segment of the full-service hotel category, has nearly 40  hotels globally and is known for its great value and customer-focused service culture; Country Inns & Suites By Carlson®, one of the fastest growing, mid-tier lodging chains with over 358  locations offering excellent value with a warm and comfortable atmosphere; and Park Inn®, with nearly 75  hotels worldwide, is a unique emerging hotel brand offering a relaxed environment in the economy category and is poised for aggressive global growth. Carlson Hotels Worldwide is one of the major operating groups of Carlson Companies, a global leader in providing corporate solutions and consumer services in the marketing, travel and hospitality industries. Other names among the Carlson family of brands and services are: Radisson Seven Seas Cruises, Carlson Marketing Group, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Results Travel, Cruise Holidays, T.G.I. Friday's and Pick Up Stix restaurants. The company has been recognized by both Fortune and Working Mother magazines as one of the "100 best places to work for in America," Carlson Companies' corporate headquarters are in Minneapolis, Minnesota. 

Rezidor SAS Hospitality is one of the fastest growing hospitality companies in the world and currently has 252 hotels in operation and under development in 48 countries with the aim to develop 700 hotels across the four brands by 2012. In September 2002, Rezidor SAS announced a unique deal with US-based Carlson Hotels Worldwide (CHW) to expand the Carlson Hotel brands in Europe, the Middle East and Africa and now operates as the umbrella brand for Radisson SAS Hotels & Resorts, Park Inn, Regent and County Inn in these areas. Rezidor SAS Hospitality is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Stockholm-based SAS Group. SAS is owned partly by the three Scandinavian governments of Norway, Sweden and Denmark and partly by private sector interests in these countries. Rezidor SAS Hospitality head office is in Brussels. 

Contact:

Knut Kleiven
Executive Vice President & CFO
Rezidor SAS Hospitality
+32 2 702 92 44
www.rezidorsas.com
www.sasgroup.net

Joan Cronson
Carlson Hotels Worldwide
+1 763-212-1418
www.carlson.com

Also See: Carlson Hotels Acquiring 25% Shareholding in Rezidor SAS; Rezidor SAS First Signed an Agreement with Carlson in 1994 for the Radisson Brand / March 2005
Kurt Ritter Announces New Organizational Structure for Rezidor SAS / November 2002


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