Elliott S. Estes founded Woodmont Lodging, a hospitality investment firm, in 2015. Mr. Estes has direct day-to-day responsibility for all company operations.
Prior to launching Woodmont Lodging, Mr. Estes was an executive at RLJ Lodging Trust (NYSE: RLJ), where he had finance, transaction and portfolio management responsibilities. Most recently, Mr. Estes served as Director of Finance and managed the execution of all asset and corporate level transactions.
During his tenure, Mr. Estes closed acquisitions totaling over $2.1 billion (24 transactions involving 47 properties), dispositions totaling over $525 million (12 transactions involving 46 properties) and debt transactions totaling over $3.0 billion. In May 2011, while working closely with and under the direction of the CFO, he successfully managed the roll-up and merger of RLJ Development, with its two affiliated private equity funds, and the subsequent $568.7 million initial public offering of RLJ. Mr. Estes also managed the execution of two subsequent follow-on offerings totaling $586.1 million.
Before joining RLJ in 2007, Mr. Estes was an investment banker at Wachovia Securities (now Wells Fargo Securities), underwriting principal investments (sale-leasebacks), senior and mezzanine debt positions, as well as joint venture equity investments.
Mr. Estes earned a B.S. degree at the University of South Carolina from the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management, where he was a University Scholar. Mr. Estes earned his MBA from Wake Forest University, where he was a Wachovia Scholar and Babcock Awardee.
Michael L. Blank is a Principal at Woodmont Lodging. Mr. Blank has over 20 years of lodging industry experience including real estate investments, capital markets, hospitality and tourism consulting and hotel operations.
Prior to co-founding Woodmont Lodging in 2015, Mr. Blank was an executive at RLJ Lodging Trust (NYSE: RLJ) where he had portfolio analysis, transaction, and corporate finance responsibilities. Most recently, Mr. Blank managed the company's Business Intelligence function, which was responsible for portfolio data analysis.
During his tenure at RLJ, Mr. Blank formalized and expanded RLJ’s business analytic function, enhancing the data collection and reporting processes of over 125 hotels and 16 different management companies. Mr. Blank also held positions in Asset Management with oversight of a portfolio of focused-service Marriott and Hilton branded hotels and in Investment and Portfolio Analysis underwriting over $2.4 billion in potential lodging transactions. Additionally, he managed the successful closing of multiple acquisitions and dispositions.
Prior to joining RLJ in 2010, Mr. Blank worked in acquisitions and dispositions at Host Hotels & Resorts (NYSE: HST) and in equity research at FBR Capital Markets covering publicly-traded lodging REITs. Mr. Blank also had roles at PKF Consulting and at the Willard Inter-Continental Hotel.
Mr. Blank earned his undergraduate degree from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University and earned his MBA from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. Mr. Blank has served as a guest lecturer at both Georgetown University and American University.