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Leadership Management News Briefs

Choice Hotels Expands Women-Focused Emerging Markets Franchise Development Program

Choice Hotels International, Inc. recently announced the expansion of its emerging markets franchise development program with new development incentives for female owners. This program is part of the company’s ongoing commitment to diversity. The expansion builds upon Choice Hotels’ longstanding efforts to extend the opportunity of hotel ownership to underrepresented populations. The goal is to increase diversity among the company’s owner base and across the hospitality industry. In March, Cheryl Goldberg won the first franchise contract as part of these efforts. She is the owner and CFO of IGO Legacy Hotel Group. Goldberg celebrated the opening of her Comfort Inn Saint Paul East hotel last week. 

“The growth of our emerging markets franchise development program, directly around supporting female hotel ownership, is proof positive of our commitment to make small business ownership a reality for underrepresented entrepreneurs,” said John Lancaster, vice president, emerging markets, franchise development and owner relationships, Choice Hotels. “With the likelihood of only one woman entering hotel development to 9.2 men, according to research from the Castell Project, it’s the dedicated efforts of Choice Hotels’ trailblazing emerging markets team that contribute to bridging the gap.”

A development program with results

Choice Hotels has a long history of creating and supporting a diverse franchisee base. For over 15 years, the company’s team has set out to make small business ownership a reality for underrepresented entrepreneurs. Since the program began, the company has awarded and financially supported over 270 franchise agreements with underrepresented minority and veteran entrepreneurs. Choice Hotels awarded 24 deals last year, despite the pandemic.

“Joining the Choice Hotels family this year has been a rewarding introduction to the outstanding support system of a leading company that truly cares about representation. I’ve been a part of the real estate and hospitality industry for nearly 30 years, and Choice has stood out as a franchisor that provides the guidance, support, encouragement and feedback to put you on the path to success,” said Goldberg. “It’s an honor to be the first female to sign on to this initiative, and I hope to inspire other women to consider hotel ownership and investment.”

Since the March launch this year, the company has granted five contracts to female entrepreneurs. These entrepreneurs include Cheryl Goldberg, Chetna Manoj, Ravina Mehta, Rachna Sachar and Dimple Patel. Choice Hotels continues to foster female hotel ownership through sponsorships and support at women-focused conferences on hotel ownership. The company has participated in She Has a Deal. This is an education and investment platform for aspiring women hotel investors and developers. It has also participated in Fortuna’s Table. Fortuna’s Table is an online community for diverse potential hotel owners. It offers them the chance to learn, inspire, network, plan and collaborate on the path to hotel investment and ownership. Additionally, it invested in the Black Girls In Real Estate Conference.

For more information about Choice Hotels’ emerging markets program and development opportunities, visit

About Choice Hotels

Choice Hotels International, Inc. (NYSE: CHH) is one of the largest lodging franchisors in the world. It boasts more than 7,100 hotels, representing nearly 600,000 rooms, in over 40 countries and territories as of March 31, 2021. The Choice® family of hotel brands provide business and leisure travelers with a range of high-quality lodging options. Options range from limited service to full-service hotels in the upscale, midscale, extended-stay and economy segments. The award-winning Choice Privileges® loyalty program offers members benefits ranging from everyday rewards to exceptional experiences. For more information, visit

Forward-Looking Statement
This communication includes “forward-looking statements” about future events, including anticipated development and hotel openings.  Such statements are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, including construction delays, availability and cost of financing and the other “Risk Factors” described in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, any of which could cause actual results to be materially different from our expectations.

This is not an offering. No offer or sale of a franchise will be made except by a Franchise Disclosure Document first filed and registered with applicable state authorities. A copy of the Franchise Disclosure Document can be obtained through contacting Choice Hotels International at 1 Choice Hotels Circle, Suite 400, Rockville, MD 20850,

For more on female hotel ownership, check out the 2021 Women in Hospitality Industry Leadership report.

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