Will Starwood Accept a Chinese Consortium's Acquisition Offer?
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Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide announced Monday that it has received an unsolicited acquisition offer of nearly $13 billion from a consortium of companies.
The group, led by China's Anbang Insurance Group, issued the non-binding proposal March 10.
With Starwood currently in agreement with Marriott International to merge later this year, the Stamford, Connecticut-based company required permission from Marriott to enter into discussions, which it did late last week.
However Starwood will only have until the end of the day on March 17 to decide whether to accept the deal as the Marriott waiver expires just before midnight.
If Starwood backs out of its current agreement with Marriott and accepts the new offer, the latter would receive a hefty $400 million termination fee. Nonetheless, on Monday, Marriott reaffirmed its commitment to the acquisition and stood by its original cash-and-stock offer.
While the latest offer is larger than the $12.2 billion bid Marriott made last fall, it carries with it far more contigencies that could potentially wind up being the difference.
Since Starwood and Marriott announced their merger agreement four months ago the two companies have cleared several key hurdles and remain on track to close the deal in June 2016. But before then, both companies have shareholder votes scheduled to take place March 28.
Anbang's offers comes amid its recent agreement to purchase of Strategic Hotels & Resorts from the Blackstone Group for $6.5 billion and approximately 13 months after it completed a nearly $2 billion deal to acquire the iconic Waldorf Astoria New York from Hilton Worldwide.
Although the timing is surprising, the interest is far from shocking considering several Chinese companies were rumored to be considering bids for Starwood prior to its agreement with Marriott.
More by Patrick Clarke
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