The Great National Hotels and Resorts Group have today (5th October 2017) announced that Rachel Howes, the former Managing Director of Booking.com Limited - encompassing Ireland, UK, France and Northern Europe markets - has taken an ownership investment in the Irish owned hotel chain.
Rachel Howes was instrumental in the success of Booking.com, helping to grow the company into a major global brand, now valued at €70 billion and listing 1.4 million hotels in 226 countries. Ms. Howes also has a proven record as a technology entrepreneur and investor and is also co-founder of HomeRez.com, one of Europe’s emerging brand leaders in holiday letting.
This investment in the Great National Hotels and Resorts Group is a huge vote of confidence in the young but rapidly-growing Irish-owned company.
Great National was formed in 2010 and is now Ireland and the UK’s fastest growing hospitality group, providing a range of outsourcing services to independent 4-star and 3-star deluxe properties including marketing, distribution, reservations and yield management. The company is now comprised of 65 hotels and resorts, with 4,500 hotel bedrooms.
Commenting on Rachel Howes’ investment, Great National CEO David Byrne said: “We are extremely pleased that Rachel has come on board with Great National. She has over 25 years’ experience in accelerating the hotels rooms revenues and is one of the leading international figures in channel management. Rachel’s role with Great National will be to further develop and direct our own distribution strategy. We look forward to working with Rachel as we move into our next stage development.”
Howes’ buy-in into Great National is part of a coordinated first round investment programme. Commenting on this, Byrne went on to add: “we are delighted with the success of this first round investment which will be used primarily for proprietary technology development in areas of distribution, digital and yield management; we also expect to announce further investor activity including plans for a series of acquisitions in the final quarter of 2017.”
With its head office in Ennis, Co. Clare, Great National is also Enterprise Ireland backed, directly employing over 860 people throughout group and hotel operations, and recently secured its first hotel management contract in the U.K.