IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) Expands EMEA Quality Assurance Program

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BUCKINGHAMSHIRE, United Kingdom/HORSHAM, Pennsylvania; January 27, 2009 – IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) has announced an expansion of its robust Quality Assurance program for all properties and brands in Europe, Middle East and Africa. The program is designed to measure and enhance brand compliance and guest service delivery at 650 properties in EMEA; IHG has partnered with LRA Worldwide, Inc. on the initiative.

LRA, a leading provider of performance measurement services to the global hospitality industry, worked closely with IHG leadership to develop a customized evaluation protocol for six of IHG’s hotel brands in the region – InterContinental, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Express by Holiday Inn, Hotel Indigo and Staybridge Suites. In all, LRA consultants will perform 1-2 evaluations annually at each hotel.

“I have worked with LRA for many years and have always been impressed.” explained Kirk Kinsell, President of, Europe, Middle East and Africa, IHG. “This program provides actionable insights. We want our guests to love our hotels. And we want them to make our hotels their first choice. This program will help us deliver on that goal.”

“IHG recognizes that current global economic conditions require increased attention to quality,” said Rob Rush, CEO of LRA Worldwide. “Consumers are scrutinizing every dollar spent, and those companies that deliver what they promise in terms of service, product and even emotional well-being will persevere in these difficult times.”

Including IHG, LRA provides performance measurement services to seven of the top ten hotel companies in the world. In all, LRA’s Quality Assurance practice conducts nearly 13,000 site visits and evaluations each year, either as a stand-alone offering or as an integrated part of an overall Customer Experience Management project. In addition to its work with other lodging clients such as Hyatt Hotels Corporation, Sol Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Grupo Posadas, Pestana Hotels, Starwood Hotels & Resorts and Wyndham Worldwide, LRA provides QA services to industry leaders in Sports, Conference Centers, Timeshare, Gaming, Homebuilding and Travel.

About IHG:
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) is the world’s largest hotel group by number of rooms. IHG owns, manages, leases or franchises, through various subsidiaries, over 4,100 hotels and more than 600,000 guest rooms in nearly 100 countries and territories around the world. The Group owns a portfolio of well recognised and respected hotel brands including InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Hotel Indigo®, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn® Hotels and Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Staybridge Suites® and Candlewood Suites®, and also manages the world’s largest hotel loyalty programme, Priority Club® Rewards with 40 million members worldwide. IHG has more than 1,700 hotels in its development pipeline, which will create 200,000 jobs worldwide over the next few years. IHG offers information and online reservations for all its hotel brands at www.ihg.com.

About LRA Worldwide, Inc:
LRA Worldwide is a leading research and consulting company in the emerging discipline of Customer Experience Management (CEM). We work with our clients to help them design and deliver consistently exceptional customer experiences in order to drive customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy, and company growth and profitability.

In LRA’s 25-year history, we have grown from a provider of customized quality assurance evaluation programs for the hospitality industry, to a leading CEM consulting company offering a variety of client solutions. The evolution has been driven by our clients asking us one question – “How do we get better?” In response, we have built a range of performance measurement, research, training and consulting solutions to help them do so. Today, we are a growing company operating in more than 120 countries throughout the world, helping clients such as Starwood Hotels & Resorts, the National Basketball Association, the PGA TOUR and Ritz-Carlton Clubs deliver exceptional customer experiences. Every touch. Every time. For more information, visit us at www.LRAworldwide.com.

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