Minto team to transition Minto Suite Hotel to a premium unfurnished and furnished suite property

OTTAWA, Feb. 18, 2014 /CNW/ - Minto Properties Inc. today announced its decision to narrow the company's hospitality focus, and accordingly will transition the Minto Suite Hotel to a premium unfurnished and furnished rental property commencing April 2014. The re-positioning of the award-winning property, which opened its doors 25 years ago, marks a strategic shift to provide greater alignment with the company's growth strategy.

"Our business has evolved beyond its roots, with Minto expanding its footprint nationally," said Michael Waters, Chief Executive Officer, The Minto Group. "This requires us to focus on what we do best and that means making some tough decisions to get out of specific lines of business - ones we are very proud of - but which no longer support our overall business objectives."

Growth, geographic diversification and delivering quality continue to be the pillars that guide the company and fuel its success within Ottawa and across Canada. Alongside the company's thoughtful stewardship of a family legacy, Minto's leadership continues to focus on growing the business.

The Minto Suite Hotel currently houses 255 hotel suites and 163 furnished suites. During the transition, hotel operations will continue, complemented by a mix of furnished suites and unfurnished residences. By late fall 2014, the transition will be complete with the hotel suites converted to a mix of premium unfurnished residences and furnished suites.

Due to this decision, there will be reductions in company staffing levels. However, more than half of the current 97 employees will be retained and re-assigned to other roles within the Minto organization. Staffing reductions will take place in phases, beginning spring 2014, with the majority of departures occurring in late fall 2014. These departures will be planned according to the speed of the renovations which are scheduled to begin in March. It is expected that the first new unfurnished rental suites will be ready for occupancy in early summer 2014.

"We understand this decision will have an impact on our staff, customers and suppliers," said Waters.  "I want to thank each of them for their service and support over the past 25 years and wish to assure them we will do all we can to assist them through the transition."

To ease the transition for employees impacted by the change and help them find alternate employment both inside and outside of Minto, all will be given ample notice of their expected departure date and will be provided with financial support, a job search program and career transition services.

During the transition phase of the hotel, Minto is committed to accommodating reservations of all groups and individuals. Existing bookings for hotel, meeting rooms and other contractual obligations will be honoured based on the transition plan. In the event where a booking is in conflict with the transition, the Minto team will take every necessary measure to move and accommodate the group or the individuals with partner hotels at the most attractive rate available.

The change in use of the hotel will mean a significant increase in the number of new, full-time residents of the award-winning Minto Place. The Minto team anticipates the retailers within Minto Place will feel a positive impact as a result of this change.

Minto, and the Greenberg family, have been an integral part of the Ottawa community for nearly 60 years. Headquartered in Ottawa, with 830 of its 1,240 employees based there, Minto has strong values, the commitment of a family-owned enterprise and is deeply rooted in doing the right thing for the community.

Some of The Minto Group's recent milestones include a partnership with the City of Ottawa in the revitalization/redevelopment of Lansdowne Park, a collaborative approach to consultations with New Edinburgh community organizations in designing Beechwood, an innovative new condo development, as well as the recent acquisition of South Centrepointe rental community in Ottawa's west end. The company also has an ongoing legacy of corporate citizenship and philanthropy focused on giving back to community organizations in Ottawa. Its employees are encouraged to participate in community fundraising and volunteer activities, with Minto matching pledges and donations.

"We take great pride in all we have done here in Ottawa to build and grow the community" continued Waters. "Today's announcement reflects our continued commitment to the city and we're excited about the positive impact and opportunities that come as a result of the launch of this premium rental residence."

About Minto:
The Minto Group, established in 1955, is an Ottawa-based real estate, development, construction and property management company with operations also in Toronto, London (ON), Calgary, and south Florida.

SOURCE The Minto Group

For further information:

please contact:

Emma Osgoode, Brand Manager
The Minto Group
Telephone: 613.782.2279
Email: eosgoode@minto.com