US private equity firm Blackstone is to buy Hilton Hotels Corporation in a deal worth more than $20b (£9.9b).
The Center Parcs and Tragus restaurant group owner has offered $47.50 (£24) per share in cash for the company, which was founded in 1919 by Conrad Hilton.
Blackstone also owns the Madame Tussauds Group of visitor attractions and New York's London NYC hotel, which is home to Gordon Ramsay's US restaurant.
The deal, which has been approved by Hilton's board of directors, is expected to close sometime during the fourth quarter of 2007.
By Chris Druce