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Marriott Time-Share Business a 'Distraction': President

Monday, 21 Nov 2011 | 11:24 AM ET

Marriott Internationalcompleted the spinoff of its timeshare division as it focuses on its lodging management and franchise business.

Service bell at hotel reception
Louis Fox | Digital Vision | Getty Images
Service bell at hotel reception

President Arne Sorenson told CNBC Monday that after 30 years together, the time-share business had become a "distraction" for Marriott investors, who were "primarily interested in the hotel business."

"We think it’s good but it's very different from the rest of our business," he said. "It’s capital-intensive, it’s about developing real estate and it's all focusing on leisure."

The Bethesda, Md., company said Monday that shares of the new company, Marriott Vacations Worldwide, are being distributed to existing Marriott shareholders. The new company began trading Monday on the New York Stock Exchange.

Marriott Completes Spin-Off
The details behind the spin-off of Marriott's timeshare business, with Arne Sorenson, Marriott International president/COO.

The company operated nearly 3,700 properties and timeshares at the end of the third quarter. The spinoff was first announced in February, but Marriott's board approved it only last month.

Sorenson said business across the globe is strong, with occupancy levels in the U.S. near the peak levels of 2007, although rates are not. While Europe is a concern, the company is excited about developing more hotels in China, India, and Brazil, Sorenson said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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