Travelodge has unveiled plans to open 19 hotels this year after completing a £100m makeover of its entire estate, paving the way for a potential sale of the chain this year.
The budget hotelier said it will invest around £140m in developing and opening new hotels in key business locations such as London, Glasgow and Bristol, creating around 450 jobs.
Four of the new developments will be in London in Belvedere, Finchley, Finsbury Park and Raynes Park. Not all of the hotels will be business-focused with some opening in tourist locations such as Poole, Weston-Super-Mare and Bicester.
It aims to have 542 UK sites by the end of 2016 and has also identified a further 250 developments across the UK. The ambitious plans comes after Travelodge spent around £100m revamping its rooms over the last three years as part of turnaround under chief executive Peter Gowers.
Gowers said: “The value hotel market continues to go from strength to strength, boosted by ever more cost-conscious businesses and the growth in independent leisure travel."
“We now see opportunity for hotels in 250 further locations across the UK and with early positive development momentum at the start of 2016, we are well positioned to deliver further strong growth in the years ahead,” he added.
Travelodge has been at the centre of heated bid speculation after its co-owners Goldman Sachs, GoldenTree Asset Management and Avenue Capital, brought in bankers from Deutsche Bank to advise them on a potential sale last summer.
The trio saved Travelodge from the brink of collapse in 2012 and are now looking to exit their stake, with the company expected to fetch as much as £1.5bn. Final bids were due in at the end of the year, with American investors Starwood Capital and Apollo Global Management both reported to be interested in buying the chain.