SAMHI nabs Hyatt Regency in Pune

Hyatt Regency Pune

Indian hotel development and investment firm SAMHI Hotels has acquired the Hyatt Regency in Pune from RK Jatia Group-owned Ascent Hotels for an estimated Rs 350 crore. 

The acquisition will be funded through a mix of debt and equity, Ashish Jakhanwala, founder and CEO of Gurgaon-based SAMHI, told the Economic Times. Jakhanwala did not share the deal size with the paper. 

Opened in 2012 within Weikfield IT Park, Hyatt Regency Pune is owned by Ascent Hotels, a joint venture between Jatia Group, with 81 percent holding, and Pune-based Vascon Engineers, with 19 percent holding. It will be SAMHI's third property in Pune, after two Formula 1-branded hotels. 

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SAMHI has fully acquired the joint venture, including its debt obligations. Jakhanwala said the property will continue to be managed by Hyatt Hotels, and Vascon will continue to be an investor through convertible debentures. Industry insiders said the deal would be worth about Rs 350 crore. 

With this exit, Jatia Group wants to focus on its Four Seasons hotel and branded residences development in Mumbai. The firm is executing a $250 million expansion of the Four Seasons Hotel in Mumbai at its six-acre land parcel in Worli. 

Experts said Pune is a high potential market for the hospitality industry. "Pune has seen the highest RevPAR growth in the country at 14.3 percent in 2015 over 2014. In fact, it is one of the very few cities where demand is not driven by just one sector but a host of sectors such as manufacturing, automobile, IT/ITeS, educational institutions and corporate business," Mandeep S Lamba, managing director India, hotels & hospitality group, at real estate consultancy Jones Lang LaSalle, told the Economic Times. 

SAMHI currently owns 16 operational hotels, operated by global players such as Marriott, Starwood Hotels, AccorHotels and Hyatt. The company, which recently received Rs 441 crore equity investment from Goldman Sachs, has joint venture partnerships with Marriott and AccorHotels to develop their budget brands Fairfield and Formule1, respectively, in the country. 

SAMHI Hotels has 10 properties poised to open in the next year to 18 months. These hotels will boost the company's Indian portfolio to 26 hotels with 3,900 rooms under five brands. Jakhanwala said the company will look to acquire more properties in some key markets, including Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and Ahmedabad. They are also expected to look for opportunities in markets such as Kolkata and Mumbai. 

By the end of 2016, SAMHI Hotels would have deployed Rs 1,900 crore in operational and under-construction projects in the country. 

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