Playa Hotels & Resorts Going Public

Playa owns and operates all-inclusive resorts, offering 6,142 rooms across its 13 locations including the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Mexico.

By IvyLee Rosario

Fairfax, Va.—Playa Hotels & Resorts B.V. announced it has entered into a business combination agreement with Pace Holdings Corp., the special-purpose acquisition company sponsored by an affiliate of TPG. The combined company will keep the Playa name and be a publicly listed company with an initial enterprise value of $1.75 billion. The transaction will be a catalyst to accelerate Playa’s growth strategy by providing $500 million of additional capital and access to the public markets to strengthen its balance sheet, pursue acquisitions and enhance distribution.

Hyatt Zilara

Hyatt Zilara

Playa’s management team, led by Chairman & CEO Bruce Wardinski, will continue to run the company post-transaction. Pace President & CEO Karl Peterson, along with two other members designated by Pace, will join the company’s board.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Pace in a transaction that not only reflects the momentum that Playa has achieved throughout the last several years but also serves as a catalyst for accelerating future growth,” said Wardinski in prepared remarks. “I have known TPG and Karl for many years and their operational expertise, differentiated sector insights and track record of developing successful businesses is unparalleled. Our new capital structure and our partnership with Hyatt, paired with TPG’s private equity heritage, create truly exciting opportunities. I look forward to working together to lead and grow Playa as a publicly listed company.”

Bank of America Merrill Lynch acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Playa. Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. and Citigroup served as financial and capital markets advisor to Pace. Hogan Lovells acted as the legal advisor to Playa and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP acted as the legal advisor to Pace.

Playa owns and operates all-inclusive resorts, offering 6,142 rooms across its 13 locations including the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Mexico. In 2013, the company entered into a strategic partnership with Hyatt to create two all-inclusive brands, Hyatt Ziva and Hyatt Zilara, of which Playa is the sole franchisee.

“When we formed Pace, our objective was to identify a great company that was ready to enter the public arena and had a business plan that we could help accelerate by providing insights, support and greater access to capital,” said Karl Peterson, TPG partner and president & CEO of Pace Holdings, in prepared remarks. “We believe that Playa is the perfect fit for this mandate. Bruce has built an exceptional company that is creating a new standard for quality and innovation in the all-inclusive resort segment. Over the years, my partners and I have witnessed first-hand his successful leadership in the hospitality space. We look forward to working with Bruce and his team to grow the company, most immediately through accessing growth capital and addressing consumer-direct sales opportunities.”

Image courtesy of Playa Hotels & Resorts

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