HVS India breaks off as Hotelivate and expands into Asia Pacific

10 January 2018 Authored by Consultancy.in

After 20 years of heading operations for international hospitality consultancy HVS’s India subsidiary, majority owner of the subsidiary Manav Thadani has broken off to form his own firm by the name of Hotelivate, taking 42 employees and the entire senior management team with him. The new firm has already begun expansion in the Asia-pacific region.

Earlier this year, HVS India went through a phase of restructuring, whereby its non core services were transferred to an external entity: Hotelivate. At the time, the essential functions such as executive search and asset management remained under the name of HVS India.

Now, the entire team of HVS India, including 42 professionals and senior managers, has broken off under the leadership of Manav Thadani to expand Hotelivate as an independent practice. Thadani was previously the majority owner of HVS India, which generated 3% of the annual revenues for HVS globally. Within India, HVS dominated 60% of the market share in the hospitality consulting domain.

The new consulting firm, Hotelivate, has been formed with the objective of diversifying services as well as expanding into markets beyond India. In terms of services, the firm will venture into the adjacent domains of retail and restaurants. In addition, the firm will stretch its existing service list to eight services, including conferences, asset management, executive search, feasibility studies, operator searches, valuation, and transactions.

hotelivate

As expressed by Managing Partner at Hotelivate and former Managing Director at HVS, Achin Khanna; “HVS offers just five services globally. Bigger consulting groups do all kinds of work. There are 20 things that a hotel owner or operator wants. We could not offer many services at HVS India that our clients wanted.” Khanna is one of five founding partners at the new firm alongside Manav Thadani, the others being Megha Tulli, Natwar Nagar and Saurabh Gupta.

In terms of geography, Hotelivate hopes to expand beyond the South Asian countries of surrounding Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, to other major markets across Southeast Asia such as Thailand and Singapore. The official launch into the Asia Pacific region has already been announced, with plans to open offices in Singapore and Bangkok.

Within India, a rapidly expanding hospitality sector will give the firm a large market to tap into. The sector is performing better than in recent years, expanding beyond the major urban centres to broaden the spectrum of offerings in smaller regions.

Commenting on the new venture, Thadani said, “As HVS, we were able to bring in systems and processes never seen before in the region, and that helped us establish a niche for ourselves as consultants. It’s with great pleasure that we announce the expansive role of Hotelivate, adding more services to our portfolio as we begin a new journey in consulting. A change in name does not change our commitment to excellence and passion for all things hospitality.”

Meanwhile, HVS is confident that it will be able to rebuild its practice in India. President and CEO of the HVS Global, Stephen Rushmore Jr. said, “I am planning to announce a new leader for India shortly. It is presumptive to assume they (existing India clients) are all moving with the old management. Many clients prefer to work with a global brand."

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