Thai Minor International buys $226 mln stake in Spain's NH Hotels

BANGKOK, May 23 (Reuters) - Thailand’s Minor International Pcl said on Wednesday that it acquired a stake in Spain-based NH Hotel Group SA for 192 million euros ($225.79 million) to grow its hospitality footprint in Europe.

Minor International will take an 8.6 percent stake in the 382-hotel European chain.

The acquisition was funded through bank loans.

“The investment is financially attractive, with high liquidity on the Madrid Stock Exchange and proven performance by the business,” Chief Executive of Minor Hotels, Dillip Rajakarier, said in a statement.

NH Hotels was benefiting from the improving European economy, Rajakarier said, adding that hotels in Spain, Benelux, Central Europe and Italy would be main growth drivers.

Minor, which also operates restaurants in Asia, could “support the NH hotels with its food and beverage expertise,” Rajakarier said.

The acquisition is the latest in Minor’s growing hospitality portfolio. In 2016, the company bought Portugal’s Tivoli Hotels for $320 million. ($1 = 0.8503 euros) (Reporting by Chayut Setboonsarng; Editing by Sunil Nair)