STAMFORD, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE:HOT) today announced a series of leadership changes across its global brand organization. The moves build upon Starwood’s legacy of brand innovation and demonstrate the company’s commitment to creating unique and compelling experiences for guests across its 10 distinct brands.
“Our brands are the heart and soul of Starwood,” said Adam Aron, Starwood’s Chief Executive Officer. “Starwood's reputation for brand innovation is legendary and a key reason we have been able to drive growth. We are investing in our global brand organization to further invigorate innovation, marketing and guest experience across all of our more than 1,200 Starwood hotels around the world.”
To lead this effort, Starwood has appointed John Peyton to the new role of Senior Vice President, Brands and Shared Services. Peyton, who most recently led the company’s Global Initiatives team, will combine his expertise in global operations and brand building to drive innovation and ensure Starwood’s 10 brands remain crisp in the eyes of guests, customers and developers. During his 15-year tenure at Starwood, Peyton has held a number of senior operations and marketing positions, and in 2005, he led a significant brand positioning effort for Starwood, called Building World Class Brands – a defining moment in the company’s evolution as a brand powerhouse. In his new role, Peyton will also oversee food and beverage, revenue management and Starwood’s integration strategy for Design Hotels. He will report directly to Aron.
Starwood Looks to Strong Bench of Talent for Leadership across Its 10 Brands
“Starwood is a dynamic organization, and we didn’t have to look far to find great leaders within our ranks to take on new brand leadership roles,” said Peyton. “I look forward to working with our new Global Brand Leaders as we sharpen the focus on Starwood’s unique and desired brands.”
Longtime Starwood leader Dave Marr has been appointed Global Brand Leader, Sheraton and Tribute Portfolio. Most recently, Marr led Starwood's six full serve brands in North America, including oversight of digital, loyalty and partner marketing, Field Marketing, as well as Architecture and Construction in the division. He also led the successful launch of Tribute Portfolio, which debuted last month and is slated to reach more than 100 hotels in the next five years. In his new role, Marr will kick off and lead significant revitalization efforts for Sheraton, Starwood’s biggest and most global brand.
Starwood Leads in Luxury, while W Continues to Shine in League of Its Own
Starwood veteran Jim Petrus returns to the company to take on the role of Global Brand Leader, St. Regis. Petrus was previously with Starwood for more than a decade, serving as Senior Vice President, Operations with a responsibility for driving topline results across brands. For the past nine years, he has served as Chief Operating Officer for Trump Hotels Collection, where he was responsible for strategic global positioning, hotel development, operations, sales, marketing, and training. This year, St. Regis will surpass 40 hotels with debuts in premier destinations such as Mumbai, Dubai and Kuala Lumpur.
24-year Starwood veteran Hoyt Harper has assumed the role of Global Brand Leader, The Luxury Collection. Harper, who most recently led Sheraton, returns to his luxury roots, which date back to the 1990s when he integrated The Luxury Collection into then-Sheraton Club International, making it the first luxury brand to participate in a hotel loyalty program. The Luxury Collection is well positioned for expansion as more independent luxury hotel owners look to Starwood’s powerful central services to enhance their business. Harper will further refine brand strategy, including investment in landmark renovations and the debut of marquee conversion hotels as The Luxury Collection reaches 100 hotels later this year.
Anthony Ingham has been named Global Brand Leader, W Hotels Worldwide. With 15 years of hospitality experience and leadership roles in both Starwood’s EAME and North America divisions, Ingham has deep experience in brand strategy and marketing communications as well as portfolio management and owner relations. His creative marketing background and global mindset – having lived and worked in Spain, Australia, Belgium, Hong Kong, the US and the UK – brings a unique and well-suited perspective to his new role. Today, W has a tremendous lead over the competitors, and Ingham will help guide the category killer as it expands to new markets such as Amsterdam, Shanghai, Dubai, Tel Aviv and Goa in the coming year.
Strong Leadership Drives Growth for Starwood’s Upper-Upscale and Mid-Market Brands
Brian Povinelli will continue in his position as Global Brand Leader, Westin and Le Méridien. A consummate marketer and brand experience engineer, both brands have flourished under Povinelli’s leadership as his team has successfully crafted Westin’s distinct wellness positioning and pivoted Le Méridien around its compelling “destination unlocked” positioning. Westin recently crossed its 200th hotel milestone and is slated for openings in diverse markets such as Denver, Doha and Jakarta, while Le Méridien will open more new hotels this year than any other year since Starwood acquired the brand.
Brian McGuinness, Global Brand Leader, Specialty Select Brands will continue to oversee Starwood’s fast-growing specialty select portfolio, comprised of the Aloft, Element and Four Points brands. McGuinness’s role, which includes brand management, operations and development, is critically important as the company makes a bigger stake in this segment around the world. With 40% of Starwood’s pipeline and nearly half the company’s expected openings for 2015, McGuinness pushes these brands to stand out in a segment that is often noted for generic offerings.
All Global Brand Leaders will report directly to John Peyton, Senior Vice President, Brands and Shared Services.
About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with more than 1,200 properties in some 100 countries and over 180,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. Starwood is a fully integrated owner, operator and franchisor of hotels, resorts and residences with the following internationally renowned brands: St. Regis®, The Luxury Collection®, W®, Westin®, Le Méridien®, Sheraton®, Four Points® by Sheraton, Aloft®, Element® and the recently introduced Tribute Portfolio™. The Company boasts one of the industry’s leading loyalty programs, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®), allowing members to earn and redeem points for room stays, room upgrades and flights, with no blackout dates. Starwood recently announced plans to spin off its Starwood Vacation Ownership, Inc. business, a premier provider of world-class vacation experiences through villa-style resorts and privileged access to Starwood brands, into a standalone public company by the end of 2015. For more information, please visit www.starwoodhotels.com.