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La Quinta Files to Raise $780M in IPO

NEW YORK (The Deal) -- Hotel operator La Quinta Holdings filed Thursday to raise up to $780 million in an initial public offering, the third hotel IPO offered by private equity giant Blackstone Group  (BX - Get Report) in recent months.

Irving, Texas-based La Quinta is an owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, with a portfolio of 834 hotels with 84,000 rooms spread across 46 states as of Dec. 31. The company owns 357 of those hotels, and said it has a pipeline of 187 additional franchised hotels to be located in the U.S., Mexico, Canada, Colombia and Honduras.

La Quinta said on a pro forma basis it earned $44.5 million in net income on total sales of $909 million in 2013.

Blackstone acquired the company in 2006 for $3.4 billion in cash and debt. La Quinta in its regulatory filing said it intends to sell 37.2 million shares at $18 to $21 per share, implying a company equity value of $2.5 billion at the top of the range. La Quinta also had $2 billion in debt as of year's end.

La Quinta said it would use net proceeds from the offering, along with available cash and a secured term loan facility, to repay about $1.9 billion in borrowings. Blackstone post-deal would own about 64% of the company's shares.

The deal continued a push by Blackstone to list its hotel portfolio. The firm last November took public Extended Stay America (STAY - Get Report), which it along with partners had acquired out of bankruptcy, and in late December floated Hilton Worldwide Holdings (HLT - Get Report).

The private equity firm has IPOed a number of nonhotel companies in the past year as well, including SeaWorld Entertainment (SEAS - Get Report), Merlin Entertainments Group, Pinnacle Foods (PF) and Brixmor Property Group (BRX).


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