Orient-Express turns down Indian Hotels tie-up plan

Orient-Express turns down Indian Hotels tie-up plan

By Reuters

Mumbai: U.S.-based Orient-Express Hotels Ltd has turned down a proposal from Indian Hotels Co Ltd for a strategic alliance, saying it aimed to remain focused at the luxury segment on its own.

Indian Hotels, which owns India’s Taj group of luxury hotels and resorts, said earlier this week it had paid $211.3 million (Rs851 crore) for a 10% stake in Orient-Express Hotels.

The largest hotels operator in India also wrote a letter to Orient-Express to initiate talks for an alliance. “The company has responded to IHCL on 19 September stating that it does not wish to pursue the proposals for discussion contained in their letter," Orient-Express said in a statement on 18 September.

“The Orient-Express Hotels portfolio of hotels and other travel related services is aimed specifically at the top end of the luxury travel market," it said. “The company believes its future growth plans should continue to focus on this segment as an independent company."

Shares in Indian Hotels rose as much as 4.9% during trade on Tuesday, a day after it announced the stake purchase, but closed little changed at Rs129.45.