Best Western joins franchising fray with SureStay

Hotel News Now is reporting on Best Western’s entrance into the “white label” franchise model in the hotel industry. The new Sure Stay franchise will operate as a Best Western subsidiary and will offer three brands in two segments, with economy, mid-scale, and mid-scale soft brands.

Published by:Jeff Higley, Hotel News Now
Published date: September, 2016

After 70 years of focusing on being a membership organization that promotes annual agreements with the hotels in its system, Best Western Hotels & Resorts is preparing to launch a franchising initiative that will feature three brands, 15-year agreements that adhere to AAHOA’s fair franchising principles and a strong tie to consumer ratings on TripAdvisor.

The SureStay initiative unveiled by President & CEO David Kong at the company’s Phoenix headquarters will officially launch 1 December. The primary advantage of the new platform will be to provide a migration path for Best Western members with properties that no longer qualify for the organization’s quality and design standards.

Expanding Best Western’s industry presence without buying another company during a time of robust industry consolidation is another motivator, Kong said.

“To open this new revenue stream, it’s going to allow us to do a lot more,” Kong said, adding the ability to invest in technology would be the primary beneficiary of the additional revenue.

The clearest distinction between the SureStay and Best Western platforms is the former’s franchising model. It was important for the initiative to be markedly different from the 70-year-old legacy platform, according to Kong.

“One of the main reasons is we want a distinction between the two—we don’t want SureStay franchisees to think they can vote on Best Western matters,” Kong said.

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