Poor Travelodge has been rather battered about over the last few years, primarily as it never really caught up with the resurgence of Premier Inn. Travelodge has been financially damaged, not least by its internal structure, and it forced a large number of its hotel building owners to take a reduction in the rent that they could collect. This didn’t thrill the owners of many of these properties, who joined together to form the Travelodge Owners Action Group.
This week, this group of landlords has revealed that they are considering switching hotel brands, which they can do thanks to a handily inserted break clause which they have. A spokesperson for the group said:
“Our mission as an action group has always been to protect the interests of domestic savers and investors, who have been forced to contend with the aggressive tactics of offshore hedge funds willing to expend unparalleled resources to protect their profits, even at the expense of their own stakeholders. We are carrying on the fight against this unjust abuse of insolvency law that has been fuelled by weak government intervention and will do everything possible to mitigate the damage caused by this CVA.
Following the inclusion of a landlord break option for over 500 Travelodge hotels within the terms of the CVA, we are in talks with a number of leading global hotel brands aimed at providing savers and investors with the long-term stability they require. Advanced discussions are ongoing with major operators such as Accor, Marriott, IHG, Hilton, Jury’s Inn, Magnuson Hotels and others. The purpose of this is to present a range of alternative options to Travelodge landlords, so that they can decide which structure would work best for them.”
So, there are numerous hotel chains which might take over some of the sites, forcing Travelodge out. The one that I’m most hopeful about is Accor, they could operate a fair number of these sites and probably pay a larger rent than Travelodge are managing to. It’s unlikely to come to anything in the near future, but if Travelodge don’t work out their CVA in the next couple of years, that might mean an increased number of Accor locations for me to pop along to….