InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) plans to launch an
all-suite, upper-midscale brand later this year.
CEO Keith Barr announced the news during the company's
full-year earnings call on Tuesday, telling investors that the rollout is part
of IHG's strategy to "add new brands in underserved areas of the market."
Barr estimated that the all-suite upper-midscale
market has grown by around 70% in the Americas over the last four years. He estimates that the segment is an $18 billion business.
"It speaks for itself in terms of the clear demand by
both guests and owners," he said. "[We'll be] appealing to travelers
looking for a design-led, authentic experience on what are typically longer
stays than your normal transient guest."
Suites brands in the upper-midscale sector include
Marriott's TownePlace Suites, Hilton's Home2Suites and Choice Hotels' Comfort
Suites, according to STR's 2018 Chain Scales. IHG's Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites are upscale and midscale brands, respectively.