PARIS—PAI Partners, a European private equity firm, has entered into exclusive negotiations for the sale of B&B Hotels, a European budget hotel chain, to the Merchant Banking Division of Goldman Sachs. It is expected to close in the second half of 2019.
PAI acquired B&B in March 2016. Under PAI’s ownership, the group has grown from a strong local player to an integrated hotel platform operating at a pan-European level, according to PAI. The company has supported the management team in its plans to accelerate international expansion (B&B is now also present in Brazil, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Portugal and Slovenia) following a significant rollout program (averaging one opening per week) and strong investment in the refurbishment of existing hotels. This resulted in the group almost doubling EBITDA since PAI’s acquisition. Today, B&B operates a network of 486 budget hotels, with a total capacity of 42,832 rooms across 12 countries.
“We are proud to have been part of B&B’s growth journey over the last three years,” said Gaëlle d’Engremont, partner at PAI Partners. “B&B is an excellent example of an entrepreneurial approach to business, which has helped achieve superior growth and customer service. Today, B&B is a strong European platform that offers consistent high quality in its budget segment and is very well placed to capture further growth.”
Andreas Kumeth, principal at PAI Partners, added: “Alongside Fabrice and his team, we have worked hard to transform B&B from a strong local player to a truly pan-European champion. We wish Fabrice [Collet, CEO of B&B Hotels] and Goldman Sachs all the best in continuing to grow B&B in the years to come.”
“PAI have been very supportive partners, helping us grow by 16+% p.a. in the last three years,” said Collet. “They have given us the backing to invest in delivering the highest levels of customer services. Additionally, we have benefited from their extensive experience of acquisitions and international expansion to further develop in Europe while also initiating our development outside of the continent. We would like to thank them for their efforts and their confidence in our teams. Leveraging our unique concept, brand and entrepreneurial spirit, we look forward to continuing our growth trajectory alongside Goldman Sachs.”