Mantra heads to Hawaii
MANTRA Group, the accommodation business which grew out of the former Stella Travel & Hospitality, has gone from strength to strength since it became separately listed
on the Australian Stock Exchange in 2014. The company’s brands include Mantra, Peppers and Breakfree, with the share price performing well and CEO Bob East enjoying a high profile as a newly appointed director of Tourism Australia. Last month Mantra spread its wings into the US for the first time, with a US$52.5 million deal to take over the Ala Moana condominium hotel. Boasting more than 1,000 rooms, the property is adjacent to the well known Ala Moana shopping centre in Honolulu. East said the acquisition was consistent with Mantra Group’s strategy to selectively expand its presence in key offshore regions by purchasing properties in destinations favoured by Australian travellers. Further acquisitions are expected by the group, which raised the funding for the Ala Moana deal via a $100 million share placement, amounting to just over 10% of its issued capital. That means there’s a fair chunk of change in the kitty to fund so-called “pipeline opportunities”.