Marriott has reached a $12.2 billion deal to buy Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, and will become the world’s biggest hotel chain. Starwood brands include the Sheraton hotels. After the purchase, the company will own more than 5,500 hotels worldwide.
Shares of Marriott rose 2% to $74.21 in morning trading and Starwood fell 3.5% to $72.34.
Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson will remain CEO of the combined company. The company’s headquarters will remain in Bethesda, Md. The companies expect the deal to close in mid-2016, following shareholder and regulatory approvals.