SAN FRANCISCO & ANNAPOLIS, Md.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Thayer Lodging Group, a value-added hotel investment company, and Quest Hospitality Ventures, a venture capital firm investing in hospitality technology companies, today announced that they have affiliated to form a private equity sponsor, Thayer Ventures, which will be the successor of Quest Hospitality Ventures. Thayer Ventures will focus on sponsoring investment funds, which will invest in emerging technology companies in the global hospitality industry. Now part of Thayer Lodging Group’s family of funds, Thayer Ventures will continue to be managed by the four principals of Quest Hospitality Ventures and will fund innovative technology startups in the $10 trillion global hospitality industry.
Thayer Ventures expects to begin making investments in 2013 from its new investment vehicles.
Thayer Ventures will be based in San Francisco and managed by general partners Mark Farrell, Chris Hemmeter and Lucien Ruby – the original founders and managing directors of Quest Hospitality Ventures – and general partner Jeff Jackson, former CFO of Sabre Holdings. Leland Pillsbury, Fredrick V. Malek, Bruce Wiles and George Dabney, each managing principals of Thayer Lodging Group, will serve as senior advisors to Thayer Ventures and its sponsored funds. As the only venture capital fund focused entirely on the hospitality industry, Thayer Ventures has deep knowledge and unrivaled relationships that will allow it to provide unequaled value to technology entrepreneurs.
“Just five sectors of the hospitality industry – travel, lodging, foodservice, cruise lines, and gaming – account for more than $850 billion in annual revenues in the U.S. alone, and there is a tremendous opportunity for smart entrepreneurs to come up with innovative solutions to advance this immensely profitable industry,” said Pillsbury. “We formed Thayer Ventures to provide hands-on guidance and financing to entrepreneurs creating innovative technology companies changing the face of hospitality.”
Along with approximately 75 other limited partners from the hospitality industry, the principals of Thayer Lodging Group seeded Quest Hospitality Ventures’ inaugural venture capital fund, which has made investments in eight technology companies in the hospitality industry, including Hipmunk, newBrandAnalytics, Nor1, and Adara Media. Based on the success of this inaugural fund, Thayer Lodging Group and Quest Hospitality Ventures formalized their partnership to create Thayer Ventures. The new venture fund endorses the original investment thesis behind Quest Hospitality Ventures and completes Thayer Lodging’s vision to create a global family of hospitality and travel funds across multiple asset classes.
“The general partners and strategic advisors behind Thayer Ventures have decades of experience funding and building hospitality companies at every stage of development, and that unique expertise will enable us to identify the world’s most promising hospitality technology companies,” said Chris Hemmeter, general partner of Thayer Ventures. “Our mission is to help entrepreneurs build profitable global companies by providing smart funding, hands-on counsel, strategic insights and industry connections.”
About Thayer Lodging Group
Thayer Lodging Group, based in Annapolis, Md., is a privately held hotel investment company that was formed in 1991 by Frederic V. Malek and Leland Pillsbury. Since its founding, Thayer has established a consistently successful track record spanning every investment cycle. Thayer has invested in more than 100 hotels, and in 2010 acquired Interstate Hotels and Resorts, the world’s largest third-party, independent hotel manager, which operates nearly 400 hotels globally. Thayer principals also have numerous investments in hospitality and travel-related companies, including Quest Hospitality Fund I. For more information about Thayer, visit the company’s web site, www.thayerlodging.com.
About Quest Hospitality Ventures
Quest Hospitality Ventures is the only venture capital firm specifically focused on the hospitality industry. Since its founding in 2009, the company has partnered with entrepreneurs to create, develop and build technology companies that will revolutionize the hospitality industry. Based in San Francisco, QHV has backed some of the world’s leading travel technology companies, including Hipmunk, hotelme.com, Nor1, Adara Media, Duetto Research, newBrandAnalytics, and ID90T. Additional information is available on the company’s website: www.thayerventures.com.