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Log In / Register | Jul 21, 2018
Hotel, hospitality and travel

FirstService Acquires Handyman Connection

FirstService Corporation announced today that it has acquired repair and remodeling service franchiser, Handyman Connection.

Handyman Connection's 100 plus franchise units provide home repairs resulting in more than $75 million in system wide sales in 2005. FirstService has US$1 billion in annualized revenues and more than 12,000 employees worldwide. It owns home and home improvement related companies such as Colliers International, California Closets, Pillar to Post Home Inspections, and Certa Pro Painters.

Cendant Board Approves Spin-Off, Aggressive Franchising

Cendant Corp.'s board approved the spinoffs of its real estate and hospitality units, now to be called Realogy and Wyndham Worldwide Corp and will list in the New York Stock Exchange under the symbols "H" and "WYN.". Realogy consists of franchise brands such as Century 21, Coldwell Banker, and ERA Real Estate. Wyndham is considered the second largest hotel franchiser, with properties under the Super 8, Days Inn and AmeriHost Inn brand names. 

According to Motley Fool , this is all part of Cendant's master plan, in hopes that the sum of its parts prove more valuable than its whole. The move also provides a boon to franchise development. In regards to Realogy's franchise future:

Hilton's Worldwide Expansion Plan

Hilton has announced plans to expand from 2,800 properties worldwide to more than 4,000 over the next five years. "It's very important for us to reach critical mass in countries where we are under-represented, such as France, Germany, eastern Europe, China, India and Australia," said CEO Ian Carter of the Hilton's recently acquired British based division, Hilton International.

Self-Service Sleeping & Eating

 Airline customers love to check themselves in at the airport. According to FastCompany, more than 75% of them do, which is probably more a function of the quality of the airline check-in being far from warm and cuddly. In contrast, only 10 - 25% of guests in hotels that have kiosks use it to check in or out. Is that because hotel guests expect more of a personal touch from their lodging experience?

Summer Travel Season Heating Up For Record Room Sales

 PriceWaterhouseCoopers is predicting a record breaking number of room nights sold this summer, more than last year’s record of 3.136 million. It is estimated to grow at 2.9%. Here’s why.

  • Even with the rising cost of gas, the industry has been able to push rates as occupancy continues to climb. Said Marr: “We are seeing very strong industry fundamentals across all industry segments. Commercial, leisure and group business is all up.”
  •  A resilient economy which remains strong even with the looming threat of terrorism and the nagging concern that hurricanes are becoming more powerful.The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index improved during June and now stands at 105.7, up from 104.7 last month.

Some markets are better positioned this summer than others. In a report issued last week by this summer’s busiest destinations with soaring room prices will be Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle and New York City.

Significant Boost In Family Oriented Leisure Travel

James H. Johnson, Executive Director of International Resort Managers Association said, “The 2006 Resort Management Conference delivered outstanding programming to educate and inform, as well as unprecedented attendance for networking. In just a few years, the Conference has become an industry ‘must-do’. Hotel Marketing News

The 6th Annual Resort Management Conference at Pinehurst Resort, North Carolina ended last week. One of the main highlights was 5% growth in leisure vacations.

New Internet Domain Extension For Travel Websites

“Online travel is a big business. Forrester Research estimates that 59 percent of Web-connected travelers book their trips online, a number that’s expected to increase in 2006.” The Columbus Dispatch

Internet domain extension .travel is approved for travel related company websites such as airlines, hotels, resorts, theme parks etc. The .travel extension has been approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. The .travel extension is issued only after thorough verification. Travel related franchisees can benefit from this new development.

Minority Friendly Franchise Business Opportunity

According to the Travel Industry Association of America, leisure travel volume is expected to increase by 2 percent in 2006, while international travel to the United States is expected to rise 5.5 percent. Travelers from all over the world are expected to visit the United States in 2006. (More details available at Business First)

Worldwide lodging franchiser Choice Hotels International has achieved phenomenal success in expanding their franchisee base during 2005. The secret to their success? They have increased their minority growth rate by 260 percent compared to that of 2003-2004, growth made up largely of African Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans and Native Americans.

Travel Trends - 2020

Switzerland’s largest travel company Kuoni Group commissioned a study on future travel trends of European travelers by 2020. They commissioned Switzerland’s Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute to conduct the study.

The institute interviewed tourism specialists, travel agents, science fiction authors and researchers in the future market-trends. As a result, they found out certain probable future travel trends and some interesting general trends also. Following are the outcome of the study:

Travel Booking Websites Vs Franchise Hotel Websites

“The city of Atlanta has sued several major Internet travel sites, including Expedia Inc, and, claiming that the companies bilked it out of tens of millions of dollars in hotel occupancy taxes. “ Atlanta Business Chronicle Millions of American travelers use various travel booking websites for their travel related needs. Though these travel booking websites provide up to date information and feature best travel deals, the travelers may not be getting their financially best offer. Some franchised hotel owners/operators are trying to encourage travelers to visit the individual hotel websites for the best deals and book with the hotels directly. As per franchise hotel owners following are the advantages of booking directly with the hotels: