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Marriott Expects to Open 100 Properties Across Asia Pacific

Marriott International, Inc. expects to open 100 properties across Asia Pacific in 2021 as it expands its global footprint and commits to a long-term growth strategy across the region.

Marriott (MAR) opened 75 properties last year despite the challenges that arose due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Greater China leading the company’s global recovery.

The opening of JW Marriott Shanghai Fengxian in spring 2021 will represent Marriott’s 50th hotel in Shanghai and its 400th hotel across China.

According to Bain & Co. and Alibaba’s Tmall Luxury unit, Mainland China saw year-on-year domestic growth in luxury products last year despite the pandemic and is expected to become the world’s largest personal luxury market by 2025. Marriott is strengthening its portfolio of luxury hotels in anticipation of this trend and once the Ritz-Carlton Reserve Jiuzhaigou opens later this year, China will become the first Asian Pacific country to house all of Marriott’s luxury hotels.

Marriott will be debuting some of its global brands in 2021 with the W Hotel in Osaka, Japan, the Luxury Collection in Hobart, Australia, and the iconic Ritz-Carlton in the Maldives.

Paul Foskey, Chief Development Officer, Asia Pacific, said, “The strength of our pipeline is testament to the long-term growth prospects in Asia Pacific.” He expressed his gratitude to owners and franchisees for their “belief in the resiliency of travel and the strength of Marriott’s portfolio of brands.” (See MAR stock analysis on TipRanks)

Gordon Haskett analyst Robert Mollins reiterated his Hold rating on Marriott two weeks ago and raised his price target from $108 to $125. This implies that Marriott is fully priced at current levels.

Mollins specifically highlighted Wyndham and Choice Hotels as best positioned of the C-Corp hotels to “weather a prolonged COVID backdrop and slower-than-expected vaccine rollout.”

Consensus among analysts is a Moderate Buy based on 6 Buys and 8 Holds. Additionally, the average price target of $122.82 suggests minor downside potential of around 3% over the next 12 months.

TipRanks’ Smart Score rates Marriott a 2 out of 10, indicating that the stock is likely to underperform the market.

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