NH Hotel Group has announced its plans to accelerate its growth strategy, having reinforced its business development team and cemented a broad and solid proposition for owners and investors looking to grow alongside it.
The company has announced the addition of two new members of its team, Carlos Ortega, the Group’s Vice President of Global Growth, and Joanna Ayala, the new Assets and Development Director for South America. Under the leadership of Laia Lahoz, Chief Assets and Development Officer, Carlos Ortega will assist Luis Arsuaga, Senior Vice President of Global Development, with delivering the growth targets established for the coming years.
Elsewhere, on the regional front, Joanna Ayala has been tasked with the mission of identifying and following through on new growth opportunities in South America, so reinforcing the Company’s presence in the Americas, where it has another team focused on Mexico and the Caribbean.
Following her hire, NH Hotel Group’s growth department now has business development directors in the main regions of Europe and Latin America, rounding out a solid team of professionals with an extensive and successful track record in hotel development and operation and ample management skills.
In the words of Laia Lahoz, Chief Assets and Development Officer, “We aspire to growth, framed by stringent criteria of medium- and long-term profit maximisation and sustainability, for us and for our shareholders. We have reinforced our structure, adding new talent to an extremely competitive and experienced team which already possesses the required local market and hotel business know-how. In addition to designing a flexible model, which can be tailored for the needs of each investor and owner, we have expanded our brand and segment proposition, thanks to our partnership with Minor Hotels. We are ready to accelerate our growth”.
Carlos Ortega has an extensive track record in the commercial property, investment banking and corporate finance businesses. He is an expert at negotiations, viability studies, the hotel industry and asset management.
With over 15 years’ experience at firms of the calibre of Matlin Associates, Hotusa Hotels and Christie & Co., he spent the last four years at JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group, first as Senior Vice President, heading up valuation and strategic advisory services, and later as Executive Vice President.
Ortega holds a Bachelor’s degree in Tourism, Hotel Management and Business Administration from Seville University. He has also completed post-graduate studies in hotel real estate investments and asset management at Cornell University, an executive programme in structured finance and private equity at IE Business School and holds a Master’s in Financial Economics from Catalonia’s Open University.
Joanna Ayala’s appointment as head of development in South America puts her in charge of growth and asset management for the NH Hotel Group’s various assets in the region.
Ayala joined the Group in 2019, having spent more than five years working at AccorHotels, where she headed up development in a number of countries. Between 2010 and 2014 she worked at Synergy Group, which is owned by Germán Efromovich, where she was part of the team that created the Movich hotel chain in Colombia; Joanna headed up the chain’s local development.
Ayala holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from CESA University in Colombia; she has also studied business at Kansai Gaidai in Hirakata, Japan.
At the end of October, NH Hotel Group gathered a sizeable group of international hotel owners and investors at the luxurious Anantara Villa Padierna in Marbella to take part in their 2019 Investment Summit. Over the two days, the attendees had the chance to meet NH Hotel Group’s top executives who outlined the Company’s plans for accelerating its growth and the drivers it plans to leverage to that end.
NH Hotel Group is a multinational urban hotel operator in Europe and the Americas, where it runs more than 350 hotels. In 2019, the Company is working with Minor Hotels on integrating all of its hotel trademarks under a single corporate umbrella brand with a presence in 52 countries worldwide. A portfolio of over 520 hotels has been articulated around eight brands – NH Hotels, NH Collection, nhow, Tivoli, Anantara, Avani, Elewana and Oaks.