[photopress:Guangzhou_chinahotel.jpg,full,alignright]Global hotel chains are increasingly targeting booming emerging economies for expansion, with China and India set to become major battlefields for future growth. This according to PriceWaterhouseCoopers in a report.
Part of the problem is that most other places are pretty well supplied. The report states:
‘As emerging markets turn into the growth engines of the 21st century, slower growth at home has led investors and hotel companies to pursue aggressive expansion abroad … China in particular has become one such battleground for operating system power.’
The InterContinental Hotels group, which owns the Crowne Plaza and Holiday Inn brands, has, for instance, announced a goal of 125 hotels in China by 2008.
French hotel group Accor, owner of the Sofitel brand and several others, plans to open 200,000 new rooms by 2010 in China plus other emerging markets.
India has a long way to go to catch up with China. India is estimated to have just 92,000 hotel rooms, compared with 135,000 in Shanghai alone.
There will also be huge growth in outbound travel from emerging nations, PWC said, adding China had already become the largest source of travellers within Asia.
Within 15 years, the number of Chinese overseas travellers is expected to rise tenfold to 100 million.
The report said:
‘The owners of globally recognized brands hope familiarity with these brands within emerging markets will … allow them to leverage the brands’ strength and drive business as these new travelers come to the more mature markets of Europe and the United States.’
Which, in truth, seems a bit of wishful thinking.