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HVS London Reports Improving Investor Sentiment as Hotel Transactions
Double Throughout Europe

March 8, 2011 - Hotel transaction volumes more than doubled in 2010, confirming an upturn in the investment market, according to this year’s annual European Hotel Transactions Report published today by HVS London.

Transaction activity across Europe reached a value of approximately €6.5 billion – up from €3.1 billion in 2009 – as the market began to show signs of recovery in the latter part of the year. Three-quarters of all hotel transactions were completed in the second half of 2010, reflecting an underlying rise in operating performance and improving investor sentiment towards the hotel sector.

Last year’s activity involved more than 80 transactions, each one in excess of €7.5 million, with 589 hotels and more than 60,000 rooms.
Single asset activity accounted for 51% of transaction volume with average price per room reaching €253,000, up 50% on 2009. This figure was boosted by several large single asset sales including the sale of London’s Grosvenor House to Sahara India Pariwar from the Royal Bank of Scotland for £470 million (€553 million), the sale by Starwood Capital of two Parisian landmarks - the Hotel de Crillon (€250 million) and Hotel Lutetia (€145 million) -  and the sale by Rocco Forte of Le Richemond in Geneva for an estimated €120.5 million.

However, although the year ended relatively strongly, total volumes remain well below their peak of €20 billion in 2006.

“The underlying trend in the European investment market remains one of low activity caused by few properties being offered for sale, by banks or otherwise, and the continuing reluctance of banks to provide loans,” commented report co-author Charles Human, managing director of HVS Hodges Ward Elliott, HVS’s hotel brokerage and investment banking division.
 
Speaking today [8 March 2011] at the International Hotel Investment Forum in Berlin, Human said: “For the European hotel investment market to return to ‘normality’, a recovery in underlying operating performance is needed, bringing with it a recovery in values, together with renewed bank lending.

“Buyer interest in the European market has clearly increased over the last six months, and as confidence continues to return to the market we expect deal volume to further recover during 2011.”

The volume of portfolio sales, rather than single asset deals, in 2010 was around €3.2 billion, almost triple the level of 2009. The two most significant transactions were Carlyle Group’s acquisition of the B&B hotel group and Pandox’s takeover of Norgani, with some 13,000 rooms in Scandinavia. Accor was active in the sale-and-leaseback market, selling five hotels to Invesco Real Estate and a portfolio of 48 hotels across Europe to a joint venture between Foncière des Murs and Predica.
 
This year’s European Hotel Transactions Report also found:
  • The UK remains the most active hotel investment market with a total volume of around €1.9 billion in 2010, followed by Scandinavia at around €1.2 billion. Other key markets are France (€772 million), Spain (€680 million) and Germany (almost €200 million).
  • Private equity groups have yet to re-emerge as key investors in the hotel sector because of the difficulty in achieving the required returns in today's market.
  • In 2010 transaction activity was dominated by high-net-worth individuals, institutional investors and hotel investment companies, accounting for 72% of volume.
  • Some 17 hotels were sold in London with a total value of nearly €1.5 billion, confirming the city's current status as one of the most sought-after of the European hotel markets.
  • The much awaited distressed selling of assets by banks remains on hold. Only four of the single asset transactions in 2010 were out of administration or receivership.
Download a copy of the full 2010 European Hotel Transactions report at http://www.hvs.com/article/5116/2010-european-hotel-transactions.

About HVS
HVS is the world’s leading consulting and services organisation focused on the hotel, restaurant, shared ownership, gaming and leisure industries. Established in 1980, the company performs more than 2,000 assignments a year for virtually every major industry participant. HVS principals are regarded as the leading professionals in their respective regions of the globe. We are client driven, entrepreneurial and dedicated to providing the best advice and services in a timely and cost-efficient manner. Through a worldwide network of 30 offices staffed by 300 seasoned industry professionals, HVS provides an unparalleled range of complementary services for the hospitality industry. For further information regarding our expertise and specifics about our services, please visit www.hvs.com.
 
About HVS Hodges Ward Elliot
HVS Hodges Ward Elliot is a joint venture between HVS and the leading US hotel real estate brokerage and investment banking firm Hodges Ward Elliott. HVS Hodges Ward Elliott acts as broker and investment advisor in European hotel real estate markets, and focuses on disposition advisory services.

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For further information or to arrange an interview with the report authors contact:
 
Linda Pettit, Tilburstow Media Partners
Tel: +44 17 3782 3721
Mob: +44 79 7378 9853
linda@tilburstowmedia.co.uk
 
Cristina Balekjian, Consulting &Valuation Analyst, HVS       
Tel: +44-20-7878-7762
Mob: +44-77-2578-1045
cbalekjian@hvs.com

Ana Campos-Blanco, Senior Associate, HVS
Tel: +44-20-7878-7747
Mob: +44-75-1550-3306
acampos-blanco@hvs.com    
 
Charles Human, Managing Director, HVS Hodges Ward Elliott       
Tel: +44-20-7257-2001
Mob: +44-78-0285-5596
chuman@hvshwe.com  


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