SOURCE: WexTrust Capital, LLC

November 15, 2007 15:11 ET

WexTrust Capital Forms Axela Hospitality

Expands Global Presence With Portfolio of Upscale Hotels and Resorts; Names Elmer Coppoolse CEO

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwire - November 15, 2007) - WexTrust Capital, LLC, a globally diversified private equity and specialty finance company, announced today its expansion into hotels and resorts with the formation of a new subsidiary called Axela Hospitality, LLC. WexTrust Capital also announced that it has appointed thirty-year hotel veteran Elmer Coppoolse as CEO of Axela.

WexTrust Capital has a strong history of delivering superior returns to investors through its diverse portfolio of real estate assets. Since 2003, the company has acquired dozens of properties ranging from office parks and warehouse distribution centers to retail malls and hotels. WexTrust Capital subsidiary, Wexford Development, is also actively involved in numerous commercial and residential development projects.

"Hotels and resorts are a logical extension to our diverse portfolio of commercial and residential real estate assets," said Steve Byers, CEO of WexTrust Capital. "Our strong expertise in capital and asset management, coupled with Elmer Coppoolse's international hotelier and hotel operations experience will make Axela a strong force in the hospitality industry."

With Mr. Coppoolse serving as CEO, Axela Hospitality will also assume management responsibilities for EMCO Hospitality, Inc., which currently manages The Resort at Glade Springs, a 210-room, 4,000-acre resort complex in West Virginia, and the Netherlands Inn and Spa, a 100-room boutique hotel in Lancaster, Pa. Axela also manages The Park View, a 200-room boutique hotel in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood and the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Phoenix, and is under contract to acquire the Wyndham Drake in Oak Brook, Ill.

Prior to joining Axela Hospitality, Elmer Coppoolse founded and served as CEO of EMCO Hospitality, Inc., a Bethesda, Maryland-based hospitality company known for its ownership stake and management of The Resort at Glade Springs in Daniels, W.Va. and The Netherlands Inn & Spa in Lancaster, Pa., among others.

"Superior management and first class guest services will be hallmarks of Axela hotels and resorts," said Elmer Coppoolse, CEO of Axela Hospitality. "We are extremely pleased to have Steve Byers and WexTrust Capital as our strategic partner and parent company in this exciting venture."

Prior to founding EMCO Hospitality, Mr. Coppoolse was a development partner and Executive Vice President and COO at SynXis Corporation. SynXis created internet based software allowing hotels to simultaneously manage their reservation channels in one single dashboard. Currently more than 10,000 hotels use SynXis' application.

Prior to SynXis, Mr. Coppoolse was President of Lancaster Hotels and Resorts, an international company with a portfolio of seven properties including: The Jefferson Hotel in Washington, D.C.; The Lancaster in Houston; The Argyle in Los Angeles; The Tremont in Chicago; The Lodge and Spa at Breckenridge; The Cotton House on the island of Mustique in the Carribbean; and The Inn at Great Neck in Great Neck, N.Y. While at Lancaster, Mr. Coppoolse helped form the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, which has grown into a consortium of over 400 hotels to date.

Earlier in his career, Mr. Coppoolse also held senior management positions with Sheraton Corporation, where he was part of the creation of its luxury hotel division, currently known as St. Regis. Previously, he also worked for Sonesta Hotels & Resorts where he was responsible for the initial development of the Sanibel Harbor Resort, as well as Sonesta's foray into Egypt and Israel.

About WexTrust Capital

WexTrust Capital is a globally diversified private equity and specialty finance company with a proven track record for protecting its clients' assets and delivering a superior return-on-investment through its diverse portfolio of principal investments. WexTrust Capital specializes in unique investment opportunities ranging from real estate to specialty finance and investment banking. Headquartered in Chicago, the company also maintains offices in New York, Norfolk, Va., Atlanta, Boca Raton, Fla., Nashville, Tenn., Tel Aviv, Israel, and Johannesburg, South Africa. More information can be found at www.wextrust.com.

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