Preben Vestdam - President
Preben Vestdam is the founder of Valhalla Associates. He oversees the complete portfolio of services offered by Valhalla Associates to hotel and resort developers, property investors and hotel operating companies. Prior to Valhalla Associates, Preben was President & CEO of NorthCourse, the leisure real estate consulting and asset management arm of Wyndham Worldwide Corporation. In this capacity he established the NorthCourse business globally by developing the brand, the product line and the service delivery including leisure real estate development strategy, market research, project feasibility, sales & marketing solutions and hotel operator searches. During his time with NorthCourse he also held the position as Managing Director of Qatar Real Estate Partners - a joint venture between NorthCourse and Qatari Diar Real Estate Development Company - focusing on the sales and marketing of Qatari Diar’s multibillion dollar luxury real estate development portfolio. Within Wyndham Worldwide, one of Preben's earlier roles was President & CEO of Group RCI in Europe & Middle East, where he over his tenure launched multiple new leisure real estate products in the region in partnership with well-known hospitality brands and developers. Prior to joining Wyndham Worldwide, Preben served as Head of Marketing for JPMorgan Asset Management, where he developed and executed marketing strategies for the firm's Investment Management and Private Banking business across Europe, Middle East & Africa. Preben’s background also includes travel industry experience with American Express, where he served 3 years as Vice President responsible for product development and management of loyalty programmes for American Express cards in Europe. Previously Preben spent 3 years with Club Med based in Paris as Marketing Director for Club Med's global resort portfolio and 6 years with IBM responsible for Sales & Marketing of information technology to financial services institutions. A native of Denmark, he holds a Master of Science degree in Economics from the Copenhagen School of Economics, Denmark, and an MBA from IMD, Lausanne, Switzerland.
Luca Franco - President, Luxury Leisure Properties International LLC
Luca Franco is based in Chicago and is the founder and president of Luxury Leisure Properties International LLC, Valhalla's exclusive partner in the Americas region. Valhalla Associates and LLPI work closely together across regions and share know-how, research and resources globally. Prior to LLPI, Luca held the position as President of DCP International in Europe, Middle East & Africa where he specialised in the design, marketing and sales of private residence clubs at luxury resorts across the region. Prior to this Luca was responsible for establishing the European platform for Exclusive Resorts. He has worked with developers to implement several Private Residence Clubs across Europe including Four Seasons Private Residence Club Tournabuoni in Florence and Palazzo Pauly in Venice. Luca has previously worked on resort developments with Four Seasons, Ferragamo Group, Bulgari Hotels, Stein Hotels and Buene Vista Hospitality Group. Luca holds a Bachelor Degree in Building Engineering from Pavia University in Italy.