Looking to penetrate the Indian market, Meininger Hotels, owned by Cox and Kings and with 16 hotels across Europe, is exploring partnership opportunities in the Indian market. Talking about their plans, Navneet Bali, CEO, Meininger Hotels, stated, “The company should be able to sign its first property in India soon and will be able to make it operational within a year’s time after necessary refurbishments as per brand standards.”
Highlighting the accommodation offerings of Meininger group, Bali points out it will cater to a market segment that has been left out so far. “We are a designer budget brand providing a hostel experience, giving the guest the opportunity to ‘book by the bed’, ranging from classic double, twin or multiple bed private rooms to dormitory rooms with multiple beds,” he stated. Bali believes that the flexibility in the room concept enables the Meininger brand to combine the traditional markets of hostels like school groups, backpackers, flashpackers, as well as family and business travellers.
So far the company have identified about 15 locations in the country for brand expansion which include both religious destinations like Amritsar, Shirdi, Varanasi, Tirupati, as well as leisure and business locations like Delhi, Agra, Jaipur, Goa, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai and Kolkata. Bali also informed that they are looking at other markets outside Europe, in South Asia and the US and Canada regional markets.
Talking about the business model for expansion, Bali said that the lease model has worked well for Meininger and they are following the same model in India as well.