Back in February we learned that Donald Trump’s employees and family are concerned what his candidacy is doing to the hotel business.
People and conferences really are booking away from Trump Hotels. Last summer I was supposed to speak at a conference at Trump Soho, but it was moved last minute to another hotel. There was no upside to the sponsoring company to be associated with the Trump brand and there was downside risk — enough to eat last minute cancellation penalties.
There’s data, too, that suggests bookings are down at Trump-branded properties since his campaign for President took off.
Donald Trump told the FEC last month that he has ‘only’ $165 million in cash and marketable securities. That’s an extraordinarily low percentage of his self-reported net worth.
The biggest thing that boosts Trump’s self-reported net worth is the $3.3 billion he attributes to the value of his brand — not to real estate holdings or other investments, but simply that the use of the Trump name itself is worth billions. Forbes pegs the value at under $150 million. (This isn’t something that generally goes into the calculation of most individuals’ net worth at all.)
Trump says his net worth goes up and down with his own feelings in other words what he thinks his brand is worth changes with his mood.
So it’s notable that Trump is launching a new lifestyle hotel brand and they’ve decided that the best way to do it is not even to use the Trump name.
Trump Hotels held an event in New York City…to say the company is planning to launch a brand-new, as-yet un-named lifestyle hotel brand that is a “response to the to the massive growth of the technology-centric ‘we’-economy.’”
…[T]he exact name for the new brand has yet to be announced, but whatever name it does eventually bear, it won’t be that of Trump. Further details about the new brand remain scarce, including when the new brand will actually launch or when or where the first development will be.
Perhaps the value of Trump’s brand, then, derives from his steaks, water, and defunct board game. (I did buy the game on a lark off eBay, I haven’t played it – the reviews aren’t great – but it’s selling for more these days.)