Ascott bolsters expansion with four new contracts in China
CapitaLand’s wholly owned serviced residence business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott), is expanding rapidly in China by inking four new management contracts for 583 serviced residence units. Two of the properties are located in Shanghai and one each in Beijing and Dalian. The addition of the new properties will further reinforce Ascott’s position as the largest international serviced residence owner-operator in China with over 14,300 units in 80 properties across 24 cities.
Mr Lee Chee Koon, Ascott’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “China is Ascott’s largest market with the most number of properties given the tremendous growth opportunities for serviced residences in the country. Chinese domestic travellers now take up 30 percent of our business in China. In August, Ascott invested in Tujia.com International (Tujia), China’s largest online apartment sharing platform, to expand in the O2O (Offline-to-Online and Online-to-Offline) business. Our serviced residences in China under our three internationally recognised brands – Ascott, Citadines and Somerset – are now available on Tujia’s website for booking, expanding our reach to more customers online.”
Mr Lee added: “This collaboration will also fuel our performance at properties beyond China as we plan to have our serviced residences outside China available on Tujia’s website in 2016. With the rapid increase in Chinese travellers overseas and Ascott’s presence in many of the tourist and business cities worldwide, our penetration of the Chinese market is expected to contribute to Ascott’s business globally. Ascott will continue to seek innovative ways to scale up our presence and build up our capabilities to ensure we remain the top choice accommodation for our guests when they travel.”
Ascott Beijing (opening 2016), Citadines Jinxiu Shanghai (opening 2019) and Citadines Putuo Shanghai (opening 2019) will boost Ascott’s portfolio to 11 properties in Beijing and seven properties in Shanghai, cementing its leadership position as the largest international serviced residence operator in the first-tier cities. Ascott is also bringing its Citadines brand to Dalian, a major port city in northeast China, with the management of Citadines Gugeng Dalian (opening 2016). Located at Dalian Economic and Technological Development Zone, the new property will cater to the fast growing accommodation needs of the developing area. By introducing Citadines to the city where Ascott currently manages two Somerset-branded properties, it will offer travellers more choices for a home away from home.