Intercontinental Hotels Group, the world’s largest hotel company by rooms, is to create 3,500 new jobs in the UK as part of a major global expansion programme in the build up to the 2012 London Olympics.
The group said it would look to recruit porters, catering assistants, waiters and bar staff as it gears up to open 36 hotels in Britain over the next two years.
The announcement comes as part of a programme to open 1,400 hotels around the world over the next four years, which is expected to create more than 100,000 jobs globally.
However Chief Executive Andy Cosslett joined the industry-wide criticism for the lack of support from the UK government to promote tourism.
“With a greater commitment from the government to support and promote the tourism industry we could create even more jobs,” he said.
IHG, which counts Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza amongst its brands, has also earmarked the Indian market for an aggressive strategy. It sees the Asia-Pacific region will be responsible for growth, with China and India leading the way. The group has just opened 12 hotels in India, and has 41 signed deals with most now under construction.
The group is also China’s largest international hotel operator. Last month it announced the signing of a landmark Beijing project, located close to the Sanlitun entertainment area.
There are currently 14 InterContinental hotels in Greater China, with an additional 17 being developed (seven hotels will be opened in 2010) including the InterContinental Shanghai Expo, InterContinental Nanjing and InterContinental Sanya.
IHG is expanding in key world capitals. InterContinental Paris Avenue Marceau was recently opened and InterContinental New York Times Square, Manhattan’s largest newly-built hotel, will be opened this July. InterContinental London Westminster is scheduled to open in late 2011, in time for the 2012 Olympics. There is a total of 63 InterContinental hotels in the global development pipeline.