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Starwood takes Anbang bid over Marriott

Published:Saturday | March 19, 2016 | 11:28 PM

Starwood takes Anbang bid over Marriott

Starwood called off a US$12.2 billion buyout agreement with Marriott in favour of an offer from a group of investors led by the Chinese insurance company Anbang.

The decision came after Anbang upped its offer for Starwood by nearly US$370 million Friday, bringing the total to more than US$14 billion.

Starwood, which owns the Sheraton and Westin hotel brands, has to pay Marriott US$400 million to end the deal.

The latest offer from Anbang and its partners is worth US$83.67 for each share of Starwood, up from its previous offer of US$81.50 per share. Starwood shareholders would get US$78 in cash for each share they own plus US$5.67 in stock for a spinoff of a vacation business.

Marriott has until March 28 to make another offer. The Bethesda, Maryland, company said Friday that it still believes its agreement with Starwood is superior and is contemplating its next step. Marriott first offered to buy Starwood in November, which would have created the world's largest hotelier.

Anbang made a dramatic entry into the US two years ago when it bought the famed Waldorf Astoria in New York for almost US$2 billion in 2014. Days before it contested Marriott for control of Starwood, it agreed to a US$6.5 billion deal to buy Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc, which owns several high-end properties including the JW Marriott Essex House in New York and Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego.