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Kingdom Hotels expands into Uganda

Kingdom Hotel Investments (“KHI”), the leading hotel and resort investment company, chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, announces signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) during a visit to Uganda by His Royal Highness to lease a 15 acre site for 99 years from the government, in the centre of Kampala. The site will be used to construct a 250 room first class hotel in the heart of Kampala for a total estimated cost of US$ 60 million.

This will be KHI’s first hotel in the Ugandan capital and will include many luxury facilities, including two restaurants, a coffee shop, a pool-side bar, a health club/ spa and a business centre. In addition, the property is envisioned to provide the business traveller and the local community with an array of leading edge meeting and banqueting facilities. The hotel’s construction will be financed 50% from equity and 50% from debt initially, with a view to refinancing the hotel as cashflows mature three years following the opening of the hotel. The hotel is expected to open late 2009.

KHI will provide funding within the transaction to re-house the dilapidated Shimoni school, currently occupying the site.

HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal, Chairman of KHI said: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to build a first class hotel in this striking emerging market. Uganda offers a unique destination where East Africa meets West Africa and we are keen to capture the rising demand from business travellers to the region. Uganda is a market with high growth potential and an exemplary stable political model.”

Sarmad Zok, Chief Executive Officer of KHI, said:” KHI continues to expand its portfolio of first class and luxury hotels across emerging markets. This site will extend our footprint across the key African territories where we are keen to have a presence as foreign business and tourist travel to the region continues to grow.”