STAMFORD, Conn., April 1 — China’s Anbang Insurance Company, the highest bidder at $14 billion for Starwood Hotels, withdrew its offer, leaving a buyout offer from Marriott International.
The Chinese firm led a consortium of companies in making the $14 billion all-cash offer after Marriott had offered $13.8 billion in cash and stock, its final offer after originally bidding $12.2 billion in November.
Anbang cited “various market considerations” in announcing it was withdrawing its offer Thursday.
Connecticut-based Starwood, which owns the W, Sheraton and Westin brands, may accept the offer of Maryland-headquartered Marriott, which operates Ritz-Carlton and Courtyard hotels, at an April 8 shareholders’ meeting.
“Anbang is a proactive global investor with deep pockets, but also financially savvy with price discipline. This is the main reason they decided to walk away from a further escalation of the bidding war with Marriott,” said Fred Hu, chairman of Beijing’s Primavera Capital Group, one of the investors in Anbang’s consortium.
The Anbang offer was conditional, and subject to review by Chinese government officials and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, an inter-agency U.S. government commission chaired by the Department of the Treasury.
Stockholders seemed disappointed by the development. In overnight trading on Thursday shares of Marriott fell 5 percent, and Starwood shares fell 4.53 percent.