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REIT Magazine: New REIT Park Hotels & Resorts Aims High in the Lodging Marketplace

According to REIT Magazine:

For many real estate companies, growth is a slow, methodical process. Just ask Thomas J. Baltimore Jr., who spent more than a decade growing the venerable RLJ Lodging Trust (NYSE: RLJ) one deal at a time.

Today, Baltimore -- who co-founded RLJ in 2000 with entrepreneur Robert L. Johnson of BET fame -- sits at the helm of a new hotel REIT, Park Hotels & Resorts (NYSE: PK), which in January became the second-largest player in its sector in one fell swoop following its Jan. 3 spinoff.

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The company's newly formed management team not only includes hotel-industry veterans, but well-known executives within the REIT world, said Lukas Hartwich, a senior analyst at Green Street Advisors.

"When a company comes public, you often have a management team that people [within the REIT industry] aren't too familiar with. With Park Hotels, people essentially know what they are getting. It's a good team," Green Street's Hartwich said.

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According to Green Street, weak corporate profits have weighed on business travel, which accounts for 75 percent of demand for the higher-quality hotels that REITs tend to own. But corporate earnings growth turned positive late last year, which Green Street says could presage an increase in hotel demand. Meanwhile, leisure travel is holding up relatively well thanks to a healthier job market and higher incomes, according to Green Street.

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To read the full article from REIT Magazine, click here.