Sovereign Wealth Centers on Tourism – Center Parcs


Sovereign wealth funds from Singapore and Abu Dhabi are potential institutional investor bidders looking at UK holiday village manager Center Parcs. Center Parcs UK Group Plc was bought by private equity giant Blackstone Group back in March 2006 for £205.4 million (US$ 357 million). Blackstone bought Center Parcs in a moment of distress as the company faced financial and operational constraints. N.M. Rothschild & Sons Ltd. advised Blackstone on the 2006 purchase, while Barclays arranged deal financing.

Globally, sovereign wealth funds from Asia and the Gulf have been major buyers of hotels, resorts and leisure businesses.

The U.S. private equity firm wants to cash in. Center Parcs generated £147 million in EBITDA in 2014. In addition, Center Parcs has an extensive property portfolio that attracts tourists and vacationers. Blackstone already rebuffed a joint bid worth £2 billion from Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and BC Partners. If Blackstone cannot get the price they want (could be around £2.5 billion), the private equity firm will look to float the company in the second half of 2015. In February, Blackstone hired Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAML) and Morgan Stanley as global coordinators to prepare for a London listing of Center Parcs.

Sovereign Wealth Centers on Tourism

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