Marriott announces big Africa expansion, new markets across the continent

Three days after Chicago-based Hyatt Hotels Corp. announced it would expand its presence in Africa by nine branded hotels over two years, Bethesda-based Marriott International (NASDAQ: MAR) responded with a plan of its own for the continent: 100 new hotels over five years.

From the African Hotel Investment Forum in Nairobi, Kenya, Marriott announced plans to increase its Africa portfolio by 50 percent, bringing its total to 200 hotels and 38,000 rooms. Marriott is already present in 21 African countries. By 2023, it will have expanded into new markets including Benin, Botswana, Ivory Coast, Mauritania, Mozambique and Senegal.

Alex Kyriakidis, Marriott’s president and managing director for Middle East and Africa, said in a statement the impetus for the growth was the acquisition of Protea Hotels and then Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, making it the largest hotel company in the world.

“African economies have sustained unprecedented rates of growth, which have mainly been driven…

Read the full story from the Washington Business Journal.