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GE to Sell Franchise Finance U.S. Hotel Business to Western Alliance

March 30, 2016, 07:52 AM
Filed Under: Industry News

GE has reached an agreement to sell GE Capital’s Franchise Finance U.S. hotel business to Western Alliance Bank, a wholly owned subsidiary of Western Alliance Bancorporation. The sale includes approximately $1.4 billion in ending net investment (ENI) and the majority of the hotel business employees. The business provides real estate financing to owners of limited service hotel properties.

Separately, GE also reached an agreement to sell its Canadian Franchise Finance business, including most employees, to a different buyer, representing about $0.3 billion in ENI. The business provides financing primarily to the Canadian hospitality and restaurant industries.

“We’re pleased to sell the U.S. hotel portion of our Franchise Finance business to Western Alliance, a fast growing bank that is committed to the business, customers and employees,” said Keith Sherin, GE Capital chairman and CEO. “Combined with the sale of our Canadian Franchise business, this represents a significant portion of Franchise Finance, our last North American business to be sold as part of our plan to significantly reduce the size of GE Capital,” he added.

When completed, the U.S. hotel business and Canadian transactions will contribute approximately $0.2 billion of capital to the overall target of approximately $35 billion of dividends expected to be paid to GE, subject to regulatory approval. Both transactions are expected to close in the second quarter of 2016. Barclays provided financial advice to GE for both transactions. Hogan Lovells provided legal advice for the U.S. hotel transaction and McCarthy Tétrault LLP provided legal advice for the Canadian transaction.

As previously announced, GE is focusing on its high-value industrial businesses and is selling most GE Capital assets. GE will retain the financing verticals that relate directly to GE’s industrial businesses. Since the announcement of this strategy in April 2015, GE Capital has signed agreements for approximately $161 billion and has closed $138 billion of those. In total, GE plans to sell approximately $200 billion of GE Capital businesses worldwide and expects to be largely complete with the process by the end of 2016.

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