I woke up this morning to the news that Marriott is going to buy Starwood Hotels for $12.2 billion. In doing so, Marriott will create the world’s largest hotel company. Although everyone knew Starwood was looking to sell and there were rumors that a Chinese company or Hyatt Hotels were going to buy them, I don’t think anyone knew Marriott was going to swoop in and acquire Starwood.
From everything I’ve read (stories below), this deal makes perfect business sense as Marriott has so many limited service properties which is something Starwood lacked. What Starwood has are luxury lifestyle brands, which the millennial travelers adore. Most travelers agree that Starwood has one of the best rewards program on the market and Marriott’s is just so-so.
The good news is that the deal isn’t supposed to close until mid-2016 so there’s no need to panic. There’s plenty of time to figure out what we should do with our SPG points and we can only hope that we won’t have to do anything as there’s a slight chance Marriott would run these rewards programs separately.
–Marriott: Marriott International to Acquire Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Creating the World’s Largest Hotel Company
–CNBC: Marriott to buy Starwood for $12.2B in cash/stock
–Skift: Marriott CEO: Starwood Deal Will Accelerate Our Globalization
–Gary Leff: Time to Start Gnashing Teeth: Marriott is Buying Starwood
–One Mile at a Time: Implications Of Marriott Buying Starwood
–The Points Guy: Marriott Announces Plan to Acquire Starwood Hotels