Hotels, Motels & Resorts
Companies in this industry operate short-term lodging facilities, including hotels, motels, and resort hotels. Major companies include Choice Hotels, Hilton, Hyatt, Marriott, and Wyndham (all based in the US), as well as Accor (France), InterContinental Hotels Group (UK), Jin Jiang Hotels (China), NH Hotel Group (Spain), and Whitbread (UK).
The global hotel industry generates more than $500 billion in revenue per year, according to Statista. The most popular travel destinations include France, the US, Spain, China, and Italy. Fast-growing international tourism markets include Japan, Thailand, Hungary, Iceland, New Zealand, and Chile. Emerging regions are expected to drive worldwide tourism industry growth over the next 15 years, led by the Asia/Pacific region.
The US hotel, motel, and resort industry consists of about 52,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $180 billion. The industry does not include casino hotels and resorts, which are covered in a separate profile.
Hotels, motels, and resorts are benefiting from global increases in tourist travel, but the incursion of short-term rental services such as Airbnb is disrupting the industry in markets around the world. Online travel agencies like Expedia have also influenced the competitive dynamic of the US industry by siphoning off revenue in the form of commissions that hotels must pay on each booking. Both of these trends disproportionately affect large hotel chains, which are fighting for stricter regulation of private rentals while negotiating more favorable contracts with third-party booking websites.
Global demand for lodging generally fluctuates based on flows of tourism and business travel, both of which are closely tied to the world economy. In addition to short-term rental properties, hotels may also compete with campgrounds, RV parks, and bed and breakfasts. Lodging establishments also lose business when potential guests instead choose to stay with family or friends when traveling.
Large companies have advantages in economies of scale in operations, can more easily raise capital, and have strong name recognition. Small companies, such as boutique hotels, can compete effectively in favorable locations and by providing specialty services. The US industry is fragmented: the 50 largest companies generate about 45% of revenue.
Desirable Locations — Proximity to popular tourist attractions, central business districts, and other high-traffic areas is a major competitive advantage for hotels. Operators often look to build new properties in areas with high potential for future growth.
Modern Facilities — Hotel operators continually update facilities and add new amenities to keep up with competitors, especially when new properties open in the same market. Companies with ready access to capital are in the best position to renovate and modernize their properties on a regular schedule.
Marketing and Customer Service — Hotels and motels rely on effective marketing and customer service to appeal to potential guests who might otherwise choose to stay at private rental properties. Many companies offer guest loyalty programs to encourage repeat business.
Companies to Watch:
Marriott International is the world’s largest hotel company following its acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide in 2016, and it plans to continue an aggressive international growth strategy. The company owns brands that serve every market segment, including full-service (Marriott Hotels & Resorts), extended-stay (Courtyard and Fairfield Inn), and luxury (Ritz-Carlton).
Hilton operates and franchises about 5,000 properties, many of which serve the mid-market segment. In addition to its flagship, the company owns brands including Doubletree, Embassy Suites, and Hampton Inn.
InterContinental Hotels Group, based in the UK, is leveraging the success of its core Holiday Inn and Holiday Inn Express brands to pursue growth in the higher end of the global lodging market. The company has invested heavily in technology upgrades at many of its properties to increase its appeal among young, high-income consumers.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major industry product lines are room fees (about 75% of industry revenue) and sales of food and beverages.
Sales & Marketing
Finance & Regulation
Regional & International Issues
Also includes the following chapters:
Quarterly Industry Update
Trends and Opportunities
Call Preparation Questions
Glossary of Acronyms