InterContinental Hotels hires McDonald’s boss as China slows

City A.M. Reporter
INTERCONTINENTAL Hotels Group, the world’s largest hotelier, yesterday appointed McDonald’s UK and European president Jill McDonald to its board, as it posted a 3.1 per cent rise in first-quarter global room revenue.

The company, which operates 4,600 hotels worldwide and is home to the Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn and InterContinental brands, said that its business in China, where it has big expansion plans, had also been hit by a fall in Japanese tourists and bird flu concerns.

Growth in global revenue per available room (RevPAR) – a key industry measure – rose 3.1 per cent overall in the three months to the end of March, and was up 4.1 per cent in its core North American market.

Growth in Greater China was a weaker 1.8 per cent, while Europe in the first quarter was down 2.2 per cent, with London trading suffering from increased room supply.

McDonald, who has led the fast food chain’s Northern Europe division for almost three years, will join the board as an independent non-executive director from the beginning of next month.