After 18 months of minimal travel due to quarantines, there may be a backlog of private equity-owned travel-related companies ready to be sold. KKR’s sale of Apple Leisure Group, known as ALG, to Hyatt for $2.7 billion, announced Sunday night, may offer a taste of what’s to come.
“The addition of ALG’s properties will immediately double Hyatt’s global resorts footprint,” said Mark Hoplamazian, CEO of Hyatt Hotels Corp. (NYSE: H) when announcing the deal. ALG owns all-inclusive resort brands, such as Secrets, Dreams, Breathless and Zöetry, with properties in Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe. KKR and KSL Capital Partners bought ALG from Bain Capital in 2016.
KKR & Co Inc. (NYSE: KKR) isn’t the only one selling. Apollo Global Management Inc. (NYSE: APO) sold time-share company Diamond Resorts International Hilton Grand Vacations in a deal that closed earlier this month.
Tempering the exit opportunities, at least temporarily anyway, are concerns that, as the Delta variant of Covid spreads, would-be travelers may balk again. Airlines, such as Southwest, are reporting an increase in cancellations. Credit card data from JP Morgan Chase shows that spending on airline tickets during late July fell by 20 percent from its peak earlier in the month. On the personal front, I’ve got my fingers crossed that it will be safe to fly to the Caribbean in September for a vacation originally planned for 2020.
What are your travel plans this fall? Mergers & Acquisitions recently sent out a survey to gauge willingness to attend in-person business events this fall. We’d love to hear from you. E-mail me: [email protected].
– Demitri Diakantonis