UK: SilverDoor has acquired Worldview, the parent company of the UK’s second largest independent serviced apartment agent Citybase, for £2.25 million.
SilverDoor also announced the formation of a new parent company
which will consist of the corporate-focused SilverDoor brand and
Worldview's Citybase, Central London Apartments and Orbital
SilverDoor managing director Marcus Angell said: "While some companies are approaching a potential Brexit with trepidation, the serviced apartment market is set to double in size over the next two years and now is the ideal time to consolidate and strengthen our position as the world's leading agents. We've always strived to raise our serviced apartment industry standards and we're excited that this new proposition will provide clients with an unrivalled booking experience and a greater range of serviced apartment options. SilverDoor and Citybase provide two very successful yet distinct offerings which complement each other perfectly."
Citybase co-founder Stuart Parker said: "We share a belief that between our brands we offer the world's finest serviced apartment booking solutions for business travellers and private clients. Our combination of the most cutting-edge and effective technology alongside exceptional, award-winning account management will ensure the SilverDoor and Citybase brands continue to be recognised as the global serviced apartment specialists."
The new parent company forecasts a combined turnover of £75 million, has 130 employees and 900 property partners around the world with a combined inventory of 160,000 individual serviced apartments.
We have been expecting an increase in M&A activity in the UK sector for a while now, as the market here becomes more mature while still growing at an impressive rate.
It's interesting to see that the first major deal of the year has come in the agency space, rather than among the operators. Industry watchers have opined that Citybase was an attractive target because of its strong online booking platform - and the £2.25 million price tag looks something of a bargain when the cost of developing complex, responsive IT systems is taken in to account.
The merged companies have also announced plans to reinvigorate the Orbital Partnership, which was launched by Citybase to some fanfare back in 2014, but has seen a fairly limited take up from operators since then.