Founder and Chairman of the internationally acclaimed Sandals and Beaches Resorts Gordon Butch Stewart is not about to disclose how a possible sale of majority stake in his Sandals Resorts International (SRI) could affect pending construction of the long awaited Beaches Resort in Barbados.
Last week, the London headquartered international news agency, Reuters, citing sources, reported that Sandals had hired investment bank Deutsche Bank AG to explore several options, including the sale of majority stake in the company.
That report also said the company could be worth well over $1 billion, including debt.
Sandals has since issued a one-paragraph statement to the Financial Gleaner in Jamaica, neither confirming nor denying the reports.
“Sandals Resort International is exploring options to accelerate the company’s long-term growth and development plans. This is not new. Meanwhile, it’s business as usual,” the statement said.
The Jamaica-based hotel chain started construction of its second property here, the Sandals Royal Barbados at Dover Woods, Christ Church, which is due to open in December this year.
The US$160 million project started out initially as an expansion to its neighbouring Dover, Christ Church Sandals Barbados property, which was opened in November 2013.
The new hotel is expected to employ approximately 600 people when opened, brining the Sandals workforce here to about 1,200.
SRI has also promised the construction of a Beaches hotel at the once popular 500-room Almond Beach Village Resort in Heywoods, St Peter.
However, when contacted by Barbados TODAY Monday afternoon to confirm the pending sale of the company and how it could impact the highly anticipated Beaches project, Stewart declined to comment.
Pressed on the matter and asked if the Beaches development were still on the cards, he would only say “we already made a statement”.
Sandals operates a number of brands, including 24 properties across the region, including Antigua, the Bahamas, Grenada, Jamaica and St Lucia.