Hotel Online  Special Report

 By Mutual Agreement Richard North Stepping Down
as Chief Executive InterContinental Hotels Group


September 15, 2004 - The Board of InterContinental Hotels Group PLC announces that by mutual agreement Richard North will be stepping down as Chief Executive and as a Director at the end of September 2004.

Richard North has been Chief Executive of InterContinental Hotels Group PLC since October 2002. He has managed the Group during its early life as a separate company, successfully leading the demerger from Six Continents, the reorganisation of the business, the strengthening of the management team and the setting of a new strategic direction. The priority for the business has centred on reducing capital intensity but now our future is increasingly focused on growing our global brands in a predominantly managed and franchised hotel system. The execution of this strategy needs different leadership skills based on brand development and operations. A search is underway for a successor and an appointment will be made as soon as possible. In the meantime David Webster, the non-executive Chairman, will take on the role of interim Chief Executive.

David Webster, Chairman, said:

“We are grateful to Richard North for leading InterContinental Hotels Group PLC during its early life as a new and separate company. He was the right man for the role and has achieved notable success. He goes with our good wishes and thanks.

“We believe that this is the right time to make this change. It will not in any way affect our core strategy. In fact, it reinforces it.

“The group is in good shape and we reported strong Interim Results last week fully in line with market expectations.

“As interim Chief Executive I inherit from Richard North an excellent team including three strong Regional Presidents, Steve Porter, Richard Hartman and Patrick Imbardelli, a respected Chief Financial Officer, Richard Solomons, and three talented heads of functions Peter Gowers of Global Brand Services, Jim Larson of Human Resources, and Richard Winter of Corporate Services.”

Richard North said:

“It has been a great privilege to lead this company during the last two years. We endured a difficult period early on and have made excellent progress executing the strategy which I established at the outset. The re-organisation of the company was completed last year and the senior management team greatly strengthened. We cut costs and capital expenditure and we have begun the radical reduction in capital intensity. As of today we have sold, or are in the process of selling, over £2.2bn of assets at book value and we have announced returns to shareholders which, when completed, will total £1bn. Finally, our trading performance is markedly improved with an 86% increase in earnings per share at the interim stage. All this is reflected in the progress of our share price, which is up from 372 pence on the first day of trading to 620.5 pence last night.

“It is now only a matter of time before the company becomes one predominantly about brands, franchising and management. I would have loved to continue to manage InterContinental Hotels Group PLC as it evolves to become the world’s leading hospitality brand owner. But I recognise that someone else whose whole business background has been developing and managing brands may be better placed to ensure the company achieves this vision and creates maximum value for shareholders. I am therefore leaving InterContinental Hotels Group PLC and wish it, our owners and partners around the world and our fantastic employees all the best for the future.”

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC of the United Kingdom [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is the world’s most global hotel company and the largest by number of rooms. InterContinental Hotels Group owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, more than 3,500 hotels and 538,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world (


David Webster
Non-Executive Chairman
InterContinental Hotels Group
+44 1753 410448

Also See: 6Con's Name Game; Holiday Inns Inc. of America, Holiday Hospitality, Holiday Corp., Bass Hotels & Resorts, Six Continents and Soon to be InterContinental Hotels Group / March 2003
Hotel Owner Leadership Development Program Created by The Owners’ Association of InterContinental Hotels and InterContinental Hotels Group / May 2004

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