Choice adopts brand-centric structure

The executive
leadership team of Choice Hotels International has
announced that the company has reorganized to a brand-centric structure in
order to drive “systemwide growth, strategic agility and financial
performance over the long term”. The new organizational structure consists
of brand- category management teams, which include the company’s upscale
and extended stay market brands (Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites and
Suburban Extended Stay Hotels), mid-market brands (Comfort Inn, Comfort
Suites and Sleep Inn), full- service market brands and international
operations (Quality Inn, Clarion, Clarion Collection and the company’s
international division), and the economy market brands (Econo Lodge and
Rodeway Inn).
  These category-specific brand divisions are responsible for brand
strategy, operations, sales and service, and are supported by strategic
services and centralized business units providing global support in the
areas of business intelligence, marketing, information technology, hotel
property performance, product innovation, and hotel procurement services.
  “These changes support our efforts to build a high-performance
organization and position us to leverage our brand equity and core
strengths in order to take advantage of opportunities for further growth,
innovation and leadership in the lodging industry,” said Joseph M. Squeri,
president and COO. “Our brand centric approach fully integrates our brands
and our business strategies and allows our brand teams to place singular
focus on understanding, anticipating and meeting the unique needs of key
customer segments across all touch points,” Squeri added.
  In support of this reorganization, the following members of Choice’s
management team will provide broad oversight and leadership over the
company’s 10 brands:
  * David Pepper (formerly senior vice president, franchise growth and
    performance) has been named to the newly created position of division
president, Cambria Suites and extended stay market brands, which
currently include Cambria Suites, MainStay Suites and Suburban Extended

  * Janna Morrison (formerly senior vice president, customer care and
technology services) has been named to the newly created position of
division president, mid-market brands, which include Comfort Inn,
Comfort Suites and Sleep Inn.

  * Bruce Haase (formerly senior vice president, international) has been
named division president, select market brands (which include Quality
and Clarion) and international operations.

  * Kevin Bradt (formerly senior director, economy brands) has been named
division president, economy market brands, which include Econo Lodge and
Rodeway Inn.
  In addition, the following members of Choice’s management team will
provide leadership and oversight for the company’s strategic services and
centralized business units:
  * Wayne Wielgus will continue to lead the company’s marketing strategies
as executive vice president and chief marketing officer, providing
oversight for marketing services, including revenue growth, frequent
traveler loyalty programs, eCommerce, intermediary marketing, and

  * Dave Goldberg (formerly senior vice president, brand value) has been
named senior vice president, brand solutions.  In his new role, he will
be responsible for driving new product and service innovations to
increase profit opportunities for the company’s franchised hotels,
enhance the guest experience, and build greater brand equity for the
company’s portfolio of hotels.  Such product and service innovations
include those related to hotel design, hotel openings, and the company’s
business to business procurement services for Choice’s franchised


  * Dan Head will continue in his position as senior vice president,
business intelligence and strategy, providing oversight for strategic
initiatives and information technology.  In addition, he will take on
the added responsibility of providing technology-related property
systems support to the company’s franchised hotels.

  * Alexandra Jaritz (formerly vice president, franchise operations) has
been named to the newly created position of vice president, property
level performance.  In her new role, Alexandra will focus on initiatives
to drive hotel property performance, including oversight for quality
assurance, revenue management, and training.

  * Aaron Katz (formerly vice president, brand value) has been named to the
newly created position of vice president, development and real estate
operations.  In his new role, Aaron will manage the company’s
development marketing efforts, including relicensings and business
development analytics, and work with the real estate development
function to seek opportunities to strategically grow the business.
  “By taking a more holistic approach to brand management, we will be
able to leverage the collective strength of our brands, as well as build
collaboration across the entire organization in order to improve the speed
and quality of our decision-making,” said Charles A. Ledsinger, vice
chairman and CEO. “I am confident that the combination of our high-caliber
management teams, sound business strategies and newly aligned brand
organization will enable us to take advantage of the many opportunities for
growth and innovation in the industry for the benefit of our shareholders,
franchisees, hotel guests and associates,” said Ledsinger.