Belfast Telegraph

Jurys Inn hotels sold to US group

US investors have agreed a 910 million euro deal for the Jurys Inn hotel group.

The business, which has four hotels in London, another 21 across the UK, five in Ireland and one in Prague, has been sold by a group of investors less than two years after restructuring its debt.

The deal was agreed by Lone Star Funds to buy the chain from Oman Investment Fund, Mount Kellett Capital Management, Ulster Bank, Westmont Hospitality Group and Avestus Capital Partners.

Jurys Inn employs about 2,000 people and operates 7,000 rooms.

In a statement the company said its business has been outperforming its competitors in the UK and Ireland, and the existing management team, led by chief executive John Brennan, will stay in place.

"I would like to thank our existing shareholders for their commitment and support and welcome Lone Star Funds as our new owners," Mr Brennan said.

"The substantial investment in our business and brand, coupled with the efforts of management and our employees, have allowed us to deliver record results in recent years.

"We are now delighted to have attracted a new owner of the scale and calibre of Lone Star Funds, who are very committed to the future growth and development of the Jurys Inn brand and business and we look forward to working with them in realising our joint ambition for the business and to capitalise on the significant opportunities emerging within our sector."

Hassan Al Nabhani, chief executive of Oman Investment Fund, said debt restructuring was key to the improved returns in recent years.

"Jurys Inn is one of OIF's earliest investments. The capital restructuring undertaken in May 2013, with the co-operation of the lenders and our partners, revived the group paving a new path of growth and progress," he said.

Nick Weber, head of Europe for Mount Kellett Capital Management, said: " Prior to its acquisition less than two years ago, Jurys Inn was burdened by excessive debt and faced an uncertain future.

"The investor group brought fresh capital, restructuring expertise, and a focused strategy to help transform the company into one of the leading mid-market hotel groups in the UK and Ireland."

The transaction is subject to approval from the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission in Ireland, and is expected to close by the end of March.

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