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Accor Beats Four Other Hotel Groups; Awarded 20-year Contract
 to Run 600 room Hotel at the New Bangkok International Airport
By Nondhanada Intarakomalyasut, Bangkok Post, Thailand
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News

Sep. 28, 2004 - The Accor hotel group has won a contract from Suvarnabhumi International Airport Hotel Co to run a four-star hotel at the new airport.

The European chain, whose brands include Sofitel, Novotel and Mercure, was awarded a 20-year management contract to operate a 600-room hotel on a 17-rai plot of land at Suvarnabhumi, said ACM Narongsak Sangapong, chairman of the recruitment committee for bidding on the new hotel.

Accor beat four other groups short-listed in the last round -- Thailand-based Central and Amari, and the US-based Radisson and Marriott groups -- as it offered the best deals and conditions, he said.

The company will call the representatives of Accor Group to negotiate the bidding price before submitting the final document to its board for approval.

Construction of the hotel is expected to be completed by July 31 next year, two months before the official opening day of the airport on Sept 29, said Bancha Pattanaporn, the chairman of Suvarnabhumi International Airport Hotel Co.

The low-rise hotel will cost 2.648 billion baht; of which 1.710 billion baht will be financed by a loan from Thai Military Bank Plc.

The remaining funds for construction will be supported by the hotel company's shareholders including Airports of Thailand Plc (60 percent), Thai Airways International Plc (30 percent) and Krung Thai Bank Plc (10 percent).

The bank yesterday signed an agreement to extend the 1.710-billion-baht loan with a 14-year repayment period to the company.

TMB president Subhak Siwaraksa said the bank expected its credit portfolio to grow by about 1 percent this year, mainly due to repayments by certain borrowers.

Meanwhile, net new loans could grow by about 5-6 percent next year because of expansion in the industry and government's planned investment in infrastructure projects, he said.

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