Details emerge of budget chain's expansion
Travelodge identifies 30 locations for Scottish hotels
Its plans for expansion north of the border – which would add at least 900 rooms to the current 2,700 – were first announced last year, but Daily Business has obtained a full list of target locations. It includes three that are done deals – Aberdeen airport, Glasgow Queen Street and Peterhead.
Travelodge is already the biggest hotel chain in Edinburgh. It has 501 hotels and around 38,000 rooms across the UK and plans to open 15 more this year.
The expansion follows a restructuring in 2012 led by KPMG which left creditors sitting on huge losses and landlords asked to accept big rent reductions. The deal was backed as a preferred option to administration.
It meant 49 hotels being put up for sale. The hotel in Edinburgh’s Shandwick Place was bought by industry newcomer Sleeperz, while the Belford Road venue in the city’s west end was taken over by a new operator.
Two hotels, in Ayr and Kilmarnock, were taken on by individual franchisees but operated and managed by Travelodge.
It saw underlying profits jump 63.5% to £66.2 million last year, helped by a big rise in the number of corporate customers looking for cheaper alternatives.
In April the group was put up for sale and there is speculation that it will be floated in a move that would value the company at about £1 billion.
Goldman Sachs, Avenue Capital and Golden Tree Asset Management are understood to have appointed advisers to look at options for the business which they bought from Dubai International Capital which acquired it for £675m in 2006.
A sale, however, could be up to a year away, according to reports in the City, while the future of the company is determined.
Target locations in Scotland:
Aberdeen Airport (deal done at 80 beds)
Glasgow East M8
Glasgow Queen Street (deal done at 171 beds)
Glasgow west end
Motherwell / Hamilton
Peterhead (deal done at 60 beds)