CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott), has added a record number of over 14,200 units across 71 properties worldwide for 2020, with the aim of growing its global portfolio to 160,000 units by 2023.
Despite Covid-19, this exceeds the number of units secured in 2019, marking a fourth consecutive year of record growth for the group.
Mr. Kevin Goh, CapitaLand’s Chief Executive Officer for Lodging and Ascott’s Chief Executive Officer, says: “Covid-19 has validated the resilience of Ascott’s business model as property owners continue to sign new management and franchise contracts with us, allowing us to achieve our fourth consecutive year of record growth in 2020. Through these new contracts, we continue to build our future recurring fee income stream. In 2021, over 80 properties with about 17,000 units are slated to open across the world. We will continue to look for opportunities to expand our presence through management contracts, franchises, strategic alliances, and stand ready to seize good investment opportunities.”
Ascott has also announced its new target for the Middle East, Africa and Turkey (MEAT) region, aiming to enhance its current portfolio by an additional 6,000 units over the next five years, to reach a total of 10,000 units by 2025.
Ascott currently has 16 properties under development and an additional 2,003 units in the pipeline that will be opening over the next two years in the region. After establishing itself as a behemoth in the Middle East, Ascott aims to further strengthen its geographical presence in emerging markets in Africa, with five properties currently in the development phase.
Mr. Vincent Miccolis, Ascott’s Regional GM for Middle East, Africa, Turkey and India, says: “Despite the challenges the hospitality industry faced across the world in 2020, our sustainable business model has allowed us to stand firm performance-wise. While we continue reinforcing our position in the Middle East, where we have established a strong presence in key markets such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, our focus over the next five years is to strengthen our geographical presence in the emerging markets within Africa.”
In July 2020, as part of its ‘Ascott Cares’ initiative, the group entered into a global agreement with Bureau Veritas, the world leader in testing, inspection and certification, becoming the first serviced apartment owner-operator to receive the Bureau Veritas Hygiene Excellence and Safety Label certification.