Industry Update
External Article14 July 2020

Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson On The Future Of The Hospitality Industry, Masks, And Furloughs

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So you think you've had a rollercoaster year? Consider the tumultuous times of hospitality leader Arne Sorenson, the president and CEO of Marriott International. On the heels of the purchase and integration of Starwood Hotels and Resorts into the Marriott organization and a period of unprecedented growth for the combined company, Sorenson was diagnosed with Stage Two pancreatic cancer. His being a treatable type of the disease, Sorenson underwent surgery, chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and immunotherapy, all in 2019, while continuing to lead the combined operation: 30 hospitality brands operating 7400 hotel and resort properties in 134 countries and territories.

Then, in early 2020, the bottom began to fall out of travel, taking with it the fortunes and prospects of the hospitality industry. Sorenson felt forced to make the unprecedented move of furloughing the majority of the executive, managerial, and support staff ("above-property associates" in the industry parlance) in the very building where he works (Marriott headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland), as well as to make other painful cuts and related decisions across the company.

Read the full article at Forbes

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