1 November 2022, London Marriott Hotel County Hall
21 November 2022, Hilton London Metropole
12 December 2022, etc.venues Monument, London
The sale of the hotel business of the UK Hilton Group to America's Hilton Hotels Corporation (HHC) is in the balance according to David Michels.The Group's chief executive told The Times of London that the chances of the £3.6bn deal going ahead were no more than 50-50.He was quoted as saying: "We're still in negotiations, but I don't know yet whether there is a deal to be done. There is a 50-50 chance it will happen. It's a bit like marrying your cousin - and you know how difficult that is."HHC made its bid for Hilton International, the Hilton brand which operates throughout the world except in America, in October after months of speculation.Even then in a statement, the Hilton Group directors sought to play down the situation by declaring there were several issues to resolve and "there can be no certainty that a sale of Hilton International will take place."But a sale of Hilton International to HHC is still the likeliest option with both sides saying it can be completed by the end of the year.The Hilton Group results for the four months up to the end of October showed a 10% rise in profits, mainly from the hotel division.Revenue per available room (revPAR) rose in all areas, particularly in the Middle East which enjoyed a 37.7% increase, compared with the same period for 2004.Around the globe, Hilton International hotels had a 8.6% rise in revPAR. In Europe and Africa, the increase was 4.7%.Hilton International's Scandic brand which operates in Scandinavia saw a 9.7% rise in revPAR.Mr Michels said: "Underpinning the 10% increase in Group profit is a strong improvement in hotel trading across the world which is expected to continue into 2006."* Hilton Group has sold 15 of its UK properties for £382.4m to the Managed Hotels Unit Trust, with funding arranged by RBS Group. It said the sale of another property, the Hilton at Edinburgh Airport was "very advanced." The Group said it also planned to place a further 22 properties on the market with a value of more than £400m. These include the Hilton London Metropole and the Birmingham Hilton Metropole.