Motel 168 IPO

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From Reuters:

“China’s Motel168, one of the country’s three biggest budget hotel chains, plans to raise about $100 million through an initial public offering on Nasdaq, sources familiar with the plan said on Wednesday.

Motel168, controlled by privately run Shanghai hotel and restaurant manager Merrylin Holdings Ltd., has hired Wall Street investment bank Morgan Stanley (MS.N: QuoteProfile , Research) to advise it on the IPO, planned for the third quarter of this year, the sources said.

Morgan Stanley is also a major shareholder in Motel168 after an investment arm of the bank paid $20 million for a 20 percent stake in late 2005, the sources said.

“Motel168 is hungry for capital now as it has to compete with Home Inns, Jinjiang Inn and other rivals for aggressive land purchases to build more hotels,” said one Shanghai-based source close to Motel168.

“If you don’t speed up, then you lose market share and soon you will be completely out of the race,” said the source, who declined to be identified before an official announcement.”

Wang Jianshuo has a good review about motel 168 in his blog.

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