NEW DELHI: The Covid-ravaged hospitality sector could soon see large mergers and acquisitions with multiple stressed owners looking to leave the business by selling to the big boys.
Oberoi group Managing Director and CEO Vikram Oberoi has informed TOI that he has been approached by some owners who want to sell their properties.
“I can’t say whether it’s because of Covid or something else, but (some) hotels are for sale.”
When asked if the group is considering such offers, the veteran of Indian hospitality said, “We have been contacted by some owners. We hope people come to us to manage their hotels, which is what we are really focused on even before the pandemic. We will continue to focus on management contracts as a growth area. ”
The total indebtedness of numerous existing and under construction organized sector hotels in India is estimated at Rs 50,000 crore. According to Mandeep S HVS ANAROCK‘s President (South Asia).
The devastating second wave of Covid hit the entire travel industry – including the hospitality industry – just as the industry was hoping for a revival of happiness since last winter.
“There was practically no business during the second wave. Most of the hotels did not have to close as there were no bookings in many places. The journey had come to a standstill. City hotels had some long-term guests. Some elderly people have checked into their homes because of the Covid outbreak, ”he said.
The concern among the people this time was so great that three guests who checked in at Oberois Wildflower Hall in Shimla before the second wave stayed there for almost three months and did not leave until the pandemic situation improved.
The resurgence of travel when the deadly second wave subsided has been quick and everyone is keeping their fingers crossed that there is no third wave.
“Business is picking up again in leisure destinations like Udaipur and Shimla. Our accommodations in Shimla are 70-80% occupied. Although the city hotels cannot be said to be doing well, they are doing better than last year (immediately after the lockdown), ”he said.
The Oberoi Group has vaccinated all eligible employees, both those directly on their payroll and external contract workers. The hospitality major believes that the resurgence of the travel industry depends on everyone getting covid jabs.
“A start can be made with domestic travel by exempting the fully vaccinated from RT-PCR testing requirements on a nationwide uniform basis. Once this goes well, the same should be expected to be replicated for international travel, ”Oberoi said.