US Fortress Group takes majority stake in Prem hotels

Irish hotel group secures ‘major’ investment as it prepares for European growth

Hospitality operator Prem Group has secured major investment from funds managed by affiliates of Fortress Investment Group as the company prepares for growth across Ireland, Britain and continental Europe.

The hospitality group, which was established in 1996, plans to acquire freehold hotel and serviced apartment properties, with the expansion of Premier Suites into cities across Europe a priority.

The value of US-based Fortress’s investment was not disclosed. However, it has acquired a majority stake in the business, through the purchase of interests held by non-executive shareholders.

The existing management team are also reinvesting the majority of their equity interests, Prem Group said.


* Dublin-headquartered Prem Group leases, owns and manages 38 hotels and serviced apartment properties across Ireland, Britain, Belgium, and the Netherlands. It has 15 serviced apartment properties under its Premier Suites brand, targeting the corporate and extended stay market. Its Irish hotels include Tulfarris Hotel and Golf Resort in Co Wicklow.

"The investment by Fortress Investment Group will provide significant further capital for expansion, including into geographies such as Germany in which the group is not currently present," said Jim Murphy, chief executive of Prem Group.

Regional presence

“Fortress recognise that we already have a strong regional presence across Europe underpinned by a team of dynamic hospitality experts who are primed for future growth.

“While we have a strong balance sheet, we believed that we needed to add a tenacious equity partner in order to achieve our ambitious growth targets for the next five years. Prem Group has a proven track record for operating in the hospitality space and it is these credentials that made us an attractive business for Fortress to invest in.”

Fortress manages approximately $53.9 billion (€47.6 billion) of assets on behalf of about 1,800 institutional clients and private investors worldwide. In a statement, it said it planned to invest further in the serviced apartments business along with other sectors in Britain, Ireland and continental Europe.

* This article has been edited on December 3rd, 2021 to remove reference to Isaacs Hotel in Cork, which is not owned by Prem but by Granmont Limited

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist