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ITC takes Fortune hotels to Dubai via management deal
The Times of India - 17 Sep 2013

Tobacco-to-FMCG-to-hospitality  giant ITC is making further inroads into foreign soil following its maiden  venture in Sri Lanka set up last year. The Rs 43,000crore conglomerate is  taking its mid-market hotel brand Fortune to Dubai through a management contract.  This will mark the entry of second ITC hospitality brand in foreign soil after  its luxury brand ITC Hotels.

An ITC Hotels spokesperson said that it has tied up with RP Group Hotels &  Resorts to manage five hotels in India and Dubai, under ITC Hotels’ 5-star  ‘WelcomHotel’ brand and the group’s midmarket to upscale ‘Fortune’ brand.

According to the spokesperson, the tie-up has been firmed up through a  memorandum of understanding (MoU) between ITC Hotels and RP Groups Hotels &  Resorts. There will be two WelcomHotels and three Fortune hotels. While the two  WelcomHotels are already under a management contract and will be flagged off  immediately, the rest three Fortune hotels are a part of the signed MoU and  will be part of the expansion drive.

On further overseas plans, Nakul Anand, ITC executive director who is in charge  of the hospitality business, said it is open to look for overseas opportunity.  “We are driven by opportunity. Whenever there is an opportunity in foreign  market we would look for that,” he added.

Currently, ITC Hotels has close to 100 properties across 70 locations. These  five managed properties will be in Kerala and Dubai. “Both Kerala and Dubai  possess immense tourism potential as significant inbound and outbound  destinations, for the country, ITC Hotels proposes to add several managed  hotels to its brand portfolio,” a spokesperson added.

The official said an ITC super-premium luxury hotel in Mahabalipuram, a  WelcomHotel in Jodhpur, Patna and Chandigarh, and more than 30 hotels under the  Fortune brand are on the anvil. Incidentally, ITC Hotels operates under four  brands. These are ITC Hotel at the luxury end, Welcome Hotel in the 5-Star  range, Fortune in the mid-market segment and Welcome Heritage in the heritage  leisure segment. The hospitality major now has an exclusive tie-up with Starwood in bringing its  premium brand, the ‘Luxury Collection’, to India. These are super deluxe and  premium hotels located at strategic business and leisure locations.

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