Worldhotels, a leading global group for independent upscale hotels, is growing its branded soft franchise solution as the ideal alternative to traditional franchising and has newly created the position of Regional Vice President Full Licence Europe, Middle East and Africa to head the development and consultancy of the branded hotels. Robert van der Graaf, previously Director of Marketing Services at Worldhotels, has taken over the new role. Van der Graaf will report directly to Managing Director Robert Hornman. Since introducing the branded soft franchise model in 2011, Worldhotels has already branded 15 hotels and plans to add another 20 by 2014. The offer is extremely competitive, as costs to owners are based purely on brand performance in total net room revenue delivery. The branded solution focuses purely on the commercial side of the business, to generate and capture opportunities for room revenue growth from all segments and all distribution channels. The model does not require any hardware standards, as Robert van der Graaf illustrates: The model is built on over 40 years of success of Worldhotels’ affiliation model and focuses on three areas – first of all full commercial support to maximise the hotel’s exposure under a global brand, secondly increase hotel market share through total brand performance, system delivery and finally distribution cost control to ultimately achieve a very healthy return on investment for hotel owners.