Marriott buys Starwood in A$17 billion mega-merger

By David Flynn, November 16 2015
Marriott buys Starwood in A$17 billion mega-merger

Marriott will take control of competitor Starwood Hotels & Resorts in a US$12.2 billion deal which will create the world's largest hotel company with some 5,500 hotels in more than 100 countries.

The deal is expected to close in mid-2016 and will see Starwood's extensive brand family including Sheraton, Westin, W, St Regis and Le Méridien folded under the Marriott umbrella.

It's not yet known how this will impact Starwood's SPG loyalty program and Starpoints reward currency in the longer term, as combining rewards schemes is a notoriously difficult endeavour.

Marriott Rewards has 54 million members, while Starwood Preferred Guest sees 21 million members on the books.

A statement issued by Marriott said the merger would combine "Starwood's leading lifestyle brands and international footprint with Marriott's strong presence in the luxury and select-service tiers, as well as the convention and resort segment."

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David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Sep 2013

Total posts 1244


American Airlines - AAdvantage

13 Jul 2015

Total posts 275

You can be sure that SPG get's merged into Marriott Rewards, and not the other way around - but wow this is a huge deal for Marriott, where they can boast Ritz Carlton and St Regis in the same portfolion, with Westin and JW to follow. 

I do wonder how this will affect pricing/rewards next year as they won't share details yet, but i hope they take advantage of this for the customers. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 May 2011

Total posts 231

I wonder if folks who have attained SPG lifetime gold or platinum will get to keep it? Will life mean life?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

15 Dec 2014

Total posts 284


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

25 Jan 2013

Total posts 240

This has been on the cards for a while. I suppose it makes sense as not many other industries have as many major top tier firms. (Hyatt, Hilton, Accor, Marriott, Starwood and IHG. Compared to the legal and accounting world who have 2 or 3 major players).

01 Feb 2012

Total posts 370

Yes, starwood has been on the block for a while but there were rumours a chinese buyer would keep it independent :(

18 Nov 2015

Total posts 118

Any news at all on whether the SPG levels will be matched by Marriott Rewards?

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