De Vere to Sell Village Hotels
Published on Jul 21 2014 2:23 PM in Hotel
The De Vere Group is to sell the Village hotels chain according to a report in the Financial Times.
The mid-market Village chain is the biggest and last chunk of Lloyds' hospitality portfolio.
There are currently 25 hotels in the chain, with 3,100 rooms spread across the properties. The chain is expected to attract bids of around £450 million. A first round of bids will take place in August, the second round in September and the sale should be completed by the end of November.
Lloyds took over De Vere in 2010 when it had huge amounts of debt and was on the brink of collapse. Lloyds' has been selling off its De Vere hospitality assets such as its conference division, hotels and its six golf resorts. According to the paper, the sale of Village could take the disposals to around £980 million, which is still shy of its £1.1. billion target. Although the sale of the Village chain will significantly reduce Lloyds' remaining debt, the bank will still have to write off another large amount.
The paper notes that Village is projecting revenues of £165 million and earnings before tax of £44 million which are both slightly ahead of the 2013 figures.
There has already been unsolicited interest in the chain from various private equity groups and real estate companies.