Keith Barr steps down as IHG CEO

Keith Barr is stepping down as CEO of IHG. He will be replaced by Elie Maalouf, who has led IHG’s Americas business as regional CEO for the past eight years.

IHG is headquartered in the UK and Barr intends to return with his family to the US. His final day as CEO will be 30 June, after which he will remain available to support and advise the business until the end of 2023.

Barr is due to speak at the International Hospitality Investment Forum later this month.

Barr has been \at IHG for more than 30 years and was appointed to the board and as CEO in July 2017. Maalouf joined IHG as Americas CEO in February 2015.

Richard Clarke, senior analyst at Bernstein, said the internal appointment likely pointed to a continuation of strategy.

This appears to be a personal decision and the succession likely points to a continuity of strategy. "The CEO leaves the business in good health, with the launch of conversion brands particularly baring fruit." he said.

What they said

Keith Barr, CEO said: “I feel incredibly privileged to have spent three decades as part of IHG, working alongside the many talented colleagues that make it such a special company, and in partnership with our hotel owners who share our passion for hospitality.

“I have been lucky enough to experience this in multiple countries over the years and to have spent the last six as CEO has been an honour. After a long time living abroad, now is the right time for me and my family to return to the US.

“I am proud of the strong position that IHG is in today, thanks to the investments we have made to transform every aspect of our business, deliver for our guests and owners, and grow and operate our brands in the right way around the world. I’m excited for what lies ahead for IHG and having worked so closely together, to see Elie lead the business and build on all he has achieved in the Americas.”

Elie Maalouf, Americas CEO and CEO designate said: “I am extremely proud to be appointed CEO of one of the world’s leading hotel companies and excited to work with our talented teams and owners around the world on what will be an important new chapter for IHG. Working closely with Keith and as an Executive Committee, we’ve made a number of critical strategic investments in recent years that position us with exciting opportunities to realise IHG’s full industry leading potential, by driving the performance and growth of our fantastic brands and delivering strong returns for all our stakeholders.”