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by Michael J. Shapiro | July 24, 2013
Hyatt Hotels Corp. will partner with Playa Hotels & Resorts to enter the all-inclusive resort segment, the company announced Friday. Hyatt will invest $325 million for preferred stock and a 20 percent ownership stake in Playa, which has 13 resorts in the Dominican Republic, Mexico and Jamaica in its portfolio, including those in development. Following significant renovations, six of the 13 properties will operate under Hyatt brands. According to the agreement, Playa will pursue the acquisition or development of new all-inclusive resorts under Hyatt's brands, and will have the opportunity to operate Hyatt-branded all-inclusive resorts in five Latin American and Caribbean countries on an exclusive basis through 2018. The hotel companies expect the first two Hyatt-branded resorts to open later this year in Mexico, following multimillion-dollar renovations to existing Playa properties. Four more resorts are slated to open in Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Mexico in 2014 and 2015. The deal is subject to approvals and is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.