Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a significant minority stake in the Rocco Forte Hotels group. Discussions surrounding a potential deal have been ongoing for several months.
The deal with PIF will see the Forte family retain majority ownership (51%) and control of the company, which is valued at £1.2 billion. Italian entity, CDPE Investimenti (CDPEI), will sell its entire stake in Rocco Forte.
PIF’s 49% investment will include an element of primary equity which will accelerate the brand’s expansion in both existing and new global markets, building on the group’s track record of growth and development that includes eight new properties opened or committed in recent years.
Sir Rocco Forte will remain Executive Chairman, alongside Olga Polizzi, who will continue as Deputy Chairman. Charles Forte, Lydia Forte and Irene Forte will also continue to hold key roles in the business.
Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approval.
“PIF is an excellent partner for us going forward. We have established an extremely good relationship during the course of our negotiations,” said Sir Rocco Forte, Executive Chairman of Rocco Forte Hotels. “They share the same vision for the brand and the future strategy of the group with the same ambition to take a long-term view. I look forward to working with PIF to expand the group and improve the high level of service we offer our customers.”
Forte thanks CDPEI for sharing the past fruitful eight years “during which we both successfully accomplished the mission we shared when we started the journey, having significantly enhanced the value of the company and increased the group’s presence in Italy and across Europe.”
“Our investment in Rocco Forte Hotels reflects PIF’s confidence in both the commercial opportunity and strength of the international hospitality and tourism industries that have shown remarkable resilience in recent years,” said Turqi Al Nowaiser, Deputy Governor and Head of International Investments Division at PIF. “As active long-term investors, PIF will continue to invest strategically in promising sectors to achieve sustainable returns globally.”
Established in 1996 by Sir Rocco Forte and Olga Polizzi, Rocco Forte Hotels is a world-renowned operator of landmark luxury hotels in exceptional city and resort locations. The group today operates 14 hotels and resorts, as well as 20 private villas, including some of Europe’s most iconic properties. A further three hotels are due to open in 2024 and 2025.