IHG shocks by shifting Asia HQ to Europe

‘Mega-region’ to be based in UK, pivoting away from Singapore
InterContinental Hotels Group has announced a new operating region combining Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, to be based in the UK from the start of 2018.
This effectively relegates IHG’s regional office in Singapore, which currently covers Asia, the Middle East and Africa, to a much smaller sub-regional division.
A second shock for many is the resignation of Jan Smits, current AMEA CEO and widely respected across the region for sealing longlasting, trustworthy relationships. He remains with IHG until the end of this year.
The restructure is the first major move by IHG’s new group CEO Keith Barr, who rose to the top on July 1 after making a mark as IHG’s CEO for Greater China, then as its chief commercial officer.
The new CEO Barr picked to run the wider EMEAA region, Kenneth Macpherson, is IHG’s current CEO for Greater China.
Some in the industry are pondering the logic of IHG moving farther away instead of staying close to the fastest-growing hotel market, Asia-Pacific. An EMEAA region is atypical for the industry, raising eyebrows about such a ‘mega-region’ and one so diverse.
TTG Asia