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La Quinta Said to Plan Debt Refinancing Before IPO

Feb. 3 (Bloomberg) -- La Quinta Holdings Inc., a midprice lodging chain owned by Blackstone Group LP, plans to refinance about $2.1 billion of debt in preparation for an initial public offering in March, a person with knowledge of the matter said.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Morgan Stanley, hired by Blackstone last year to explore a sale or IPO of La Quinta, also will manage the refinancing, said the person, who asked not to be named because the process is private. La Quinta will seek a new term loan, the person said.

Blackstone is capitalizing on rising stocks and hotel occupancies to take some of its largest lodging assets public. The New York-based firm filed on Dec. 24 for an IPO of La Quinta under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act, which allows companies with less than $1 billion in revenue to keep applications confidential until shortly before they promote the share sale.

La Quinta operates more than 800 midprice, limited-service hotels with about 80,000 rooms in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, according to its website.

Peter Rose, a Blackstone spokesman, declined to comment on the refinancing plans.

Another Blackstone hotel unit, McLean, Virginia-based Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc., refinanced about $13 billion of debt before its December IPO. The offering raised $2.71 billion, a record for the lodging industry. Extended Stay America Inc., a chain whose owners include Paulson & Co., Centerbridge Partners LP and Blackstone, went public on Nov. 12.

To contact the reporter on this story: Hui-yong Yu in Seattle at hyu@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kara Wetzel at kwetzel@bloomberg.net

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