Appointed Chief Executive Officer
At Extended Stay America, Inc. in Charlotte – SC, USA
The Boards of Directors of Extended Stay America, Inc. (“ESA”) and its paired-share REIT, ESH Hospitality, Inc. (“ESH”), (NYSE:STAY and collectively, the “Company”) today announced that they have appointed Jonathan S. Halkyard to serve as the next President and Chief Executive Officer of both companies, effective January 1, 2018. Concurrently with the appointment of Mr. Halkyard, the Company’s current President and CEO, Gerry Lopez, will transition to the role of Senior Advisor until March 18, 2018. Mr. Halkyard will succeed to Mr. Lopez’s positions on the ESA and ESH Boards of Directors on January 1, 2018.
Mr. Halkyard, 52, is a seasoned corporate executive with deep public company experience and extensive knowledge of the Company, having served as the Chief Financial Officer of ESA and ESH since January 2015 and prior to that as ESA’s Chief Operating Officer since September 2013. From July 2012 to September 2013, Mr. Halkyard served as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of NV Energy, Inc., a holding company providing energy services and products in Nevada, and its wholly-owned subsidiaries, Nevada Power Company and Sierra Pacific Power Company. From March 1999 to May 2012, Mr. Halkyard held various positions with Caesars Entertainment Corporation (formerly known as Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc.), including Vice President (from 2002 to 2005), Treasurer (from 2003 to 2010), Senior Vice President (from 2005 to 2010), Executive Vice President (from 2010 to 2012) and Chief Financial Officer (from 2006 to 2012). Mr. Halkyard currently serves on the board of directors of Dave Buster’s, Inc.
Mr. Lopez joined the Company in August 2015, when it was majority-owned and controlled by private equity sponsors who had taken the Company public in 2013. Since then, Mr. Lopez led the implementation of several infrastructure systems and completed the renovation of the Company’s entire portfolio of hotels. Mr. Lopez and his team also set the Company forward on the strategic path that was introduced at the Company’s Investor Day in June 2016. That strategy, dubbed ESA 2.0, involves three key components: selling non-strategic assets; launching a franchising program for the first time in Company history; and building new Company-owned assets for the first time in more than a decade. All three pieces are now up and running, with a leader and team hired to execute the strategy, multiple transactions in process, and a pipeline of new hotels now growing.