Shahin Shaath, CEO of KTM Hospitality in Ontario Mills, California has known many lenders during his career, and quite honestly, he’s not easily impressed.
With a family history in the hospitality industry and personal experience working with franchisors like Carrows and British Petroleum, Shaath has put together many deals and finds typical bankers bureaucratic and even lazy.
When the time came to finance his first hotel, a new Hampton Inn, he started with some traditional lenders, but it didn’t go well.
“I went to two or three different banks and played the game,” said Shaath. “It was frustrating because I don’t have time to follow their bureaucracy.”
He then started researching non-bank lenders and found videos of Fountainhead CEO Chris Hurn on YouTube. He was impressed by Hurn’s knowledge and how he presented himself and the company. More importantly, he learned that Fountainhead looks beyond the numbers and wants to finance the right project and the right people. This resonated with Shaath.
“From my first call with a credit analyst, I knew I was in the right place,” said Shaath. “They understood my project from day one, paid attention to it, learned about my background, and we built chemistry.”
Shaath and Fountainhead quickly began analyzing the project and exchanging information and documents. Shaath wanted to close in two months, and he said Fountainhead’s team worked day and night – and delivered.
“I enjoy building quality businesses, and I always close on time,” said Shaath. “They understood exactly who I am and the numbers. I’m amazed with the experience with Fountainhead and their team.”
Shaath’s Hampton Inn Rancho Cucamonga recently broke ground and is scheduled for a grand opening in late 2020. The 108-room hotel is strategically located off the first exit as travelers return from Las Vegas. Shaath has a talented team including his civil engineer brother and architect sister-in-law as well as other relatives who have been in hospitality for decades. He plans to build two or three more hotels in the next five years, all in California.
He confirms that next time his first call will be to Fountainhead.