Saturday, 19 August, 2017

Marriott set to woo Chinese tourists with Alibaba deal

Marriott International Inc Nx Stage Medical Inc, Zynerba Pharmaceuticals Inc and more- PRE-MARKET What's moving Wall Street in pre-market
Debra Rodriguez | 09 August, 2017, 01:24

"We are proud to join forces with Marriott International - combining our large-scale consumer base, leading-edge technology and consumer insights with their unparalleled hospitality expertise", Alibaba Group CEO Daniel Zhang said in a statement, adding that the companies aim to make travel "more seamless and personalized" for Chinese consumers.

Shortly after the opening bell on Monday, shares of Alibaba soared almost 2.1 percent to 156.50 USA dollars a share, while Marriott stocks rose almost 1 percent to trade at 106.00 dollars a share.

Tourists will be able to pay for bookings using the Chinese e-commerce company's online payments platform, Alipay, the companies said. The project would also feature content, programs and promotions for Chinese travelers in Marriott hotels, according to a company press release. Marriott's focus with the joint venture is mostly outbound Chinese travellers, Linnartz said. It will also link the two loyalty programs.

New York-listed Alibaba owns the South China Morning Post.

Marriott International Inc, the world's largest hotel chain, reported a 67.6 percent rise in second-quarter profit as more people booked its rooms at higher rates. Alibaba shares rose 3.6 percent to $158.84.

The partnership benefits both companies. It fended off Anbang Insurance Group Co. past year to win the bidding war for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, the purchase of which made Marriott the world's largest hotel operator and gave it more luxury and lifestyle brands, a bigger presence outside the US, and a large cohort of loyal guests, including a big share of higher-spending business travelers.

"This venture will introduce our hotels worldwide to this new and growing travelling class". Hotels are offering incentives for guests to book directly and to earn points through co-branded credit cards.

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