Softbank-backed Oyo Hotels has named Sam Shih its COO for the China market. In his new role, Shih will be responsible for overall regional operations, driving consumer experience and building operating efficiencies across Oyo China.
Before joining Oyo Hotels, Shih was president of global consumables and CEO at Asia Pulp & Paper Co. He also led the operations at Red Bull and Accor Group, France. Shih started his career with PepsiCo Inc., where he spent more than two decades.
“We are really excited to welcome Sam as a partner and COO [for] Oyo China,” said Ritesh Agarwal, founder and group CEO, Oyo Hotels. “We have witnessed tremendous growth during the last one year which has helped Oyo Jiudian emerge as [one of] the top three hotel chains in China. Sam’s incredible operating acumen, coupled with a strong understanding of P&L, will be extremely invaluable as we forge ahead in our mission to create quality living spaces and help the small hotels deliver an exceptional customer experience which is at par with the big hotel chains. We are confident that Sam’s experience will help us set new benchmarks in the hotel industry, as well as help oversee and nurture a high-performing workforce.”
“The hospitality industry is one that attaches great importance to operations,” Shih said. “The achievement of Oyo Hotels is largely attributed to the improvement it has made to hotels’ operations, which in turn solved hotel owners’ pain points. In [the] future, we will strive to ensure the refinement and upgrade of the company’s operation as well as that for standalone hotels. We aim to find a well-balanced golden triangle between cost, efficiency and service so as to fulfill the demands of both owners and consumers.”
Currently, Oyo has a presence in 280 cities across China, operating more than 5,000 hotels with 260,000 rooms.
In September, Oyo Hotels received $800 million in investment by SoftBank, Lightspeed, Sequoia and Greenoaks capital out of which the hotel chain has committed $600 million to China, its second home market after India.