Hospitality firm Lemon Tree Hotels is looking to have around 12,000 rooms in its inventory by the end of 2021 as part of its capacity addition plans, mainly in India, a top company official said.
The mid-market hotels company has 53 hotels in 32 cites across its three brands -- Lemon Tree Premier, Lemon Tree Hotels and Red Fox Hotels, as on January 31 this year.
"We are pretty sure that by 2021-end, we will have 12,000 rooms mainly in India. We currently have around 5,500 rooms and we are building another around 3,500 rooms which are mostly our own," Lemon Tree Hotels Chairman and Managing Director Patanjali Keswani told PTI.
Besides India, the other markets that the company is looking at include Thimphu (Bhutan), Dubai and Kathmandu (Nepal).
The company is opportunistically looking at acquiring more inventory, say another 3,000 rooms, mostly under the management and leased model during this period, he added.
"The 12,000 rooms would be about 20 per cent of India's mid-market hotels. When we achieve this at that point, we will have some degree of market power," Keswani said.
Tailwinds in India are also strong for the company as demand is picking up and supply is drying up, he added.
"So, we will have advantage of three things -- market power, tailwinds and brand visibility that will come into pricing," Keswani said.
Given the increasing occupancy levels across the country and favourable demand-supply mismatch in the mid-priced hotel sector, the company expects better price hikes going forward, he added.
On funding, Keswani said: "We are currently funded for 9,000 rooms. For the additional 3,000 rooms depending on the capital requirement, we will find ways to raise capital in the least risky fashion. We will be prudential."
Lemon Tree Hotels opened its first hotel with 49 rooms in May 2004 and operates in the mid-priced hotel sector, consisting of the upper mid-scale, mid-scale and economy hotel segments.