Jinjiang Inn’s Metropolo Hotel brand will set a milestone for globalization in 2015, its biggest challenge now is to build a talented team to move forward.
Getting a European foothold
Jinjiang Holdings secured a foothold in Europe with the full acquisition of France’s Louvre Hotels Group from Starwood Capital via its overseas subsidiary on January 14.
The acquisition is seen as a pioneering move by Jinjiang Holdings to secure the strategic French market, one of the most popular national destinations in Europe. Europe has become the second most popular region for Chinese tourists after Southeast Asia.
Prior to the acquisition, the Jinjiang Inn hotel brand was already in partnership with the Louvre Group. In an agreement signed with Louvre’s Campanile brand four years ago, both parties mutually placed branding in 15 of their properties and offered standardized service to partner hotel customers.
However Chinese guests visiting Europe far outnumbered European visitors to China. After sending waves of customers to Campanile, Jinjiang Inn saw the opportunity to get into overseas markets themselves.
Overseas operations get off to a flying start
As the global brand of Jinjiang Inn, Jinjiang Metropolo Hotel has already been exploring overseas expansion for many years.
Jinjiang Inn first signed a transnational brand export agreement with Philippine snack maker Oishii in September 2011. The agreement enabled Jinjiang Inn to officially use its brand in the Philippines to establish its first overseas budget hotel chain.
Jinjiang Inn then introduced its hotel brand to France via brand association in its aforementioned partnership with Louvre Group in November 2011.
Its next global move was into Korea, with Korean developer Sang Won Housing building a chain of hotels that comply with Jinjiang’s overseas standards. It then moved on to Indonesia with a partnership with PT Marindo Investama in January 2014 that included authorizing local operator PT Marindo to run their franchise in Indonesia.
Metropolo Hotel boosts HR training and recruitment
Globalization has brought its own challenges to Jinjiang Inn. Besides localization the biggest challenge is recruiting qualified personnel. Metropolo Hotel has always placed great importance on human resources development and has designed its own complete corporate training management system to ensure the rapid development of its domestic hotel personnel.
After the Louvre Hotels acquisition it will leverage and integrate the management resources and expertise of its European hotel brands with its existing Chinese brands.
It is also building a team that is keen to learn and train themselves to reach international industry standards.
Additionally, Jinjiang Inns is looking to recruit more international management talent, especially mid- to high-level executives experienced in chain operation, from the top 500 globally ranked corporations.(Translation by David)