BETHESDA, Md., Aug. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Marriott International, Inc. (NYSE: MAR) announced today plans to increase spending among diverse suppliers to 15 percent by 2009. Additionally, the program will expand to include a new category for Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual and Transgender (LGBT) suppliers and international markets, Brazil and the United Kingdom. "Last year, our company reached record levels in spending," said Mike Tobolski, senior director, Diversity Initiatives, Marriott International, Inc. "We plan to build on our company's success in the U.S. and expand our program to nurture relationships internationally and within the LGBT community." In April, Marriott became a corporate member of the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, Marriott announced, earlier this year, a record spend of $400 million among diverse suppliers in 2006, $40 million alone with Hispanic-owned businesses. In 2005, the company set a goal to spend more than $1 billion with diverse suppliers by 2010. Marriott is well on track to achieve its goals ahead of schedule. The success of Marriott's diversity programs has been nationally recognized. This year, Marriott was named "Top 50 Companies for Supplier Diversity" by Hispanic Trends magazine, "Top 50 Companies for Diversity" by DiversityInc and "Top 40 Companies for Diversity" by Black Enterprise. For more information on Marriott supplier diversity program, visit http://www.marriott.com. MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL, INC. (NYSE: MAR) is a leading lodging company with nearly 2,900 lodging properties in the United States and 68 other countries and territories. Marriott International operates and franchises hotels under the Marriott, JW Marriott, The Ritz-Carlton, Renaissance, Residence Inn, Courtyard, TownePlace Suites, Fairfield Inn, SpringHill Suites and Bulgari brand names; develops and operates vacation ownership resorts under the Marriott Vacation Club, Horizons by Marriott Vacation Club, The Ritz-Carlton Club and Grand Residences by Marriott brands; operates Marriott Executive Apartments; provides furnished corporate housing through its Marriott ExecuStay division; and operates conference centers. The company is headquartered in Bethesda, Md., and had approximately 151,000 employees at 2006 year-end. It is ranked as the lodging industry's most admired company and one of the best places to work for by FORTUNE(R). The company is also a 2006 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ENERGY STAR(R) Partner. In fiscal year 2006, Marriott International reported sales from continuing operations of $12.2 billion. For more information or reservations, please visit our web site at http://www.marriott.com.
SOURCE Marriott International, Inc.