Hotel du Vin and Malmaison ‘begin sales talks’

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The proposed sale of boutique UK hotel chains, Hotel du Vin and Malmaison, is reportedly underway, with international visitors said to be interested in the brands.

According to Sky News, KSL Capital Partners, which acquired Malmaison Group in 2012, and advisers at the investment bank UBS have begun circulating financial information about the company to prospective buyers.

As the selling process for two of Britain’s biggest boutique hotel chains has begun earlier than expected, insiders believe that offers for the chains, originally founded in 1994, will be received during the first week of February.

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MWB Group previously owned the collection of 28 hotels but fell into administration in November 2012.

KSL has invested heavily in the brands over the past two years, employing Gary Davis, an experienced industry executive, as chief executive in 2012. He has significantly increased sales and grown profits and has now taken on a new role as chief executive of the Village hotels chain, acquired by KSL at the end of 2014.

According to a source, KSL, a private equity firm based in Denver, Colorado, could put a hold on the sale if the bids placed are not financially attractive.

Malmaison Group, who employs approximately 3,000 people, has ambitions to further grow its brand and is currently looking at new acquisitions.

A £1m renovation is currently underway at the recently purchased historic Cannizaro House in southwest London, which will be opened under the Hotel du Vin brand. Further sites, including Great Scotland Yard in Central London, are also in the process of being acquired. KSL is also finalising a £480m deal to complete the purchase of the Village Urban Resorts chain.

Hotel du Vin and Malmaison have a strong reputation within the hospitality sector following a series of successful renovation projects. The group has focused on turning renowned landmarks including a Grade II listed warehouse, former castle prison, hospital and sugar refinery into boutique hotels.
Malmaison declined to comment on Tuesday.

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