Ascott expands in US with another major acquisition

Lee Chee Koon (centre) seals the deal with Henry Luebbert (left) and Jack Jensky (right), Synergy's co-founders
Lee Chee Koon (centre) seals the deal with Henry Luebbert (left) and Jack Jensky (right), Synergy’s co-founders

Ascott, the serviced apartment giant operated by Singapore-based CapitaLand, has confirmed its second major acquisition in the space of a month.

The company has agreed to purchase an 80% stake in Synergy Global Housing, a leading accommodation provider in the US. The acquisition will approximately triple Ascott’s American portfolio from just over 1,000 units to about 3,000 units nationwide.

This deal comes just weeks after Ascott announced plans to acquire a majority stake in Quest Apartment Hotels, to make it the largest serviced apartment provider in Australasia.

“With the acquisition of Synergy as well as our earlier investment in Quest, Ascott is gearing up to transform our business to become an even more active and dominant player in the hospitality ecosystem,” said Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s CEO.

“As we move up the value chain to acquire strong operating platforms globally, we are getting closer to our customers, understanding their needs better and thereby improving our service and product offerings to them. The synergies to be realised with these majority-stake acquisitions will propel Ascott’s growth at an unprecedented pace.”

Mosso in San Francisco
Mosso, one of Synergy’s properties in San Francisco

Ascott has been a partner of Synergy since 2013, with the two companies cross-selling each other’s units. The acquisition of its US partner will see Ascott add more than 2,000 units to its global portfolio, located predominantly in the US. It will also increase the company’s total global portfolio to almost 70,000 units. The company has previously stated that it is targeting 80,000 units worldwide by 2020.

“The US is Ascott’s third largest source market for guests. This acquisition will give us direct access to Synergy’s corporate customers in the US that include world-renowned technology brands in the Bay Area and beyond,” Lee continued. “In addition to providing Ascott’s corporate customers with more accommodation options in the US, we will also be able to immediately fulfil demand from Synergy’s corporate customers when they require accommodation outside of the country.

“The US is a key market for Ascott and we see potential for us to expand further in cities such as New York, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington DC,” he added.

Earlier this year, Ascott acquired Hotel Central Fifth Avenue New York, which will be rebranded to Citadines Fifth Avenue New York in 2018.

Lee stated that Ascott would continue to “look at more opportunities to grow through investments, management contracts, franchises and strategic alliances” in future.

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