Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) announced today that it has completed the previously announced sale of the Desert Inn Hotel and Casino to Stephen A. Wynn for approximately $270 million.
“The sale of the Desert Inn completes Starwood`s exit from gaming and enables us to focus on our core global hotel and leisure business,” said Barry S. Sternlicht, Chairman and CEO of Starwood. “This closing brings total asset sale proceeds since February of 1998 to more than $7.0 billion. Some of these proceeds were used to complete the strategic tender for the public 30% minority in CIGA, to acquire the premier independent interval ownership operator Vistana and share repurchase of more than $700 million. Further, we have successfully deleveraged our balance sheet with net debt now approximately $5.3 billion, a significant decrease from approximately $8 billion. This balance sheet strength facilitates our growth strategy and positions the Company for an investment grade rating.” Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., through its St. Regis, Luxury Collection, Westin, Sheraton, Four Points and W brands, is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with more than 700 hotels in 80 countries and 120,000 employees at its owned and managed properties. SOURCE Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.