The Entry and Exit of Investors: Hospitality Transactions during the Covid Period
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The market turbulence incited by the recent Covid 19 pandemic caused a substantial, albeit brief, disruption in the hospitality and travel industry. Nevertheless, players in the hotel real estate market continued trading during this time. While it’s true that a substantial number of owners exited the industry during the pandemic—well over 5,300—nearly as many entered the industry—more than 4,500, according to figures recorded in the CoStar database. Despite the many exits and entrances, the overall distribution of ownership type remained essentially the same in the wake of the pandemic. The preponderance of owners continues to be single firms that hold a single hotel. However, an analysis of the hotel transactions from the Covid period finds one notable change in hotel ownership distribution, due to the interest in the industry by private equity investors. Taking advantage of hotel price weakness early in the pandemic, private equity investors increased their market share from 1 percent to 3 percent, even considering the substantial number of private equity investors that exited the hotel industry.