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  • Finance & Investment
  • Due Diligence Procedures for Hotel Appraisals

  • What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the phrase "business valuation"? Mathematics? Formulas perhaps? Maybe even WACC (weighted average cost of capital) for those of you with a MBA. The end product of an appraisal is often a numerical value and people sometimes perceive the process to be math intensive. Although it is true that the use of formulas and equations is essential to the valuation procedure, due diligence procedures encompass far more than mathematical models. The importance of due diligence research cannot be overlooked because of its crucial role in justifying the outcome of a valuation.

    There are many factors that directly influence the value of a subject business or hotel, and they can generally be classified under the following three main areas contributing to value: company environment, industry dynamics and economic conditions. These factors then form different aspects of due diligence research. In the following paragraphs, we will discuss the three areas of due diligence research in more detail.

    Company research encompasses several different factors, and in most cases, these have the most direct impact on a company's day-to-day operations. Some examples of company research are customer demographics, management/directorship structure, suppliers, advertising and intellectual property. ...

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Feature Focus
Hotel Law: The Biggest Challenges
Given the size and scope of the international hotel industry, the subject of hotel law is equally varied and vast. From development deals to management agreements; from food and beverage liability to labor and employment; from claims management to anti-trust matters; to legal concerns surrounding the issues of risk, safety and security, the practice of hotel law relies upon the expertise of many different kinds of legal specialists and practitioners. Though the subject matter is broad, there are several pending legal issues which will loom large in 2014 and beyond. The Affordable Care Act will be fully implemented in 2014 and its impact on hotel companies and their hiring practices is still to be determined. Other significant labor issues to be addressed include lawsuits pertaining to tip credit and tip pooling; wage-hour audits conducted by the Department of Labor: ongoing negotiations with unions involving living wage issues and the right of workers to organize; and increased pressure on hotel operations to be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. On the business side of the industry, it is expected that there will be a wave of new hotel development that will engender all the related legal issues land acquisition, entitlements, joint ventures and other financing, selection of hotel operators and brands, along with Hotel Management and Franchise Agreements. In addition, it is projected that there will be a substantial increase in foreign investment particularly from the Chinese. Chinese investment will involve all the normal legal issues of an investment from due diligence, acquisition and financing, but will add layers of complexity to deal with tax and other international issues involving direct foreign investment in the U.S. These critical issues and others pertaining to Hotel Law will be explored in the December issue of Hotel Business Review.