Blackstone set to relaunch Hilton as a public company

New York

One of the largest leveraged buyouts of the pre-crisis era is about to come full circle, after the private-equity group Blackstone yesterday gave notice of plans to bring Hilton back to the stock markets as it looks to take advantage of the revival in the hotel industry.

Blackstone took Hilton Worldwide – the company that owns the hotel chain – private in 2007 in a buyout worth more than $26bn (£16bn).

With trends across the industry showing signs of steady improvement – a recent report by PricewaterhouseCoopers forecast 5.9 per cent growth in US revenues per available room, a key industry metric, in 2014 – Hilton has filed papers for an initial public offering of up to $1.25bn in stock.

In the regulatory filing, the company trumpeted the change in its fortunes since being bought by Blackstone in October, 2007. The number of open rooms across the business climbed 34 per cent between the end of June 2007 and the end of June this year. Over the same period, Hilton said it had increased the number of rooms under construction by 121 per cent.

Meanwhile, the company's adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation have climbed by an annual average of over 12 per cent from the end of 2010 to the end of 2012.

Founded by Conrad Hilton in 1919, the company's portfolio comprises more than 4,000 hotels, resorts and timeshare properties around the world.

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