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LONDON-The Kuwaiti Algerian Investment Company (KAIC) has sold two London hotels in a £7.5 million ($11 million) deal. These are the only hotels to have been sold in the market since the events of the 11th September.

The sale of the 79-room Albany Hotel at 4-12 Barkston Gardens, London, SW5, and the 69-room Kensington Edwardian Hotel at 40-44 Harrington Gardens, SW7, means KAIC has now relinquished all of its UK assets.

Joel Goldman, director of Chesterton’s licensed, leisure and hotels division, which acted for KAIC in the sale says he believes this transaction shows not only prevailing confidence in the market but also the continuous demand of buyers for hotel property in Central London.

A new report on the hotel forecasts more hotels will come on to the market as a result of the terrorist bombings. Knight Frank’s UK Hotel Review went to press before 11 September but hotels partner Colin Hall says subsequently: “In the light of 11 September, we are expecting to see supply levels increase. This will present the hotel industry with renewed opportunities for expansion and new ventures.”

There have already been plenty of mergers and acquisitions. Jones Lang LaSalle’s new report “Global Investment in Hotel Branding” shows how this year has seen Europe become the hotbed of global consolidation as the US hotel markets have witnessed a virtual shutdown in M&A transactions since 2000. Over the last four-and-a-half years, there have been 120 portfolio transactions totalling $75 billion. According to JLL Hotels, brand value is the driver behind these prices.

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