The race to win over Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. has been won by Marriott International, Inc. in a deal that will create the world’s largest hotel company. This morning it was announced that both companies signed an amendment to their definitive merger agreement, just when it looked as though the Chinese insurance company, Anbang Insurance Group Co., was going pinch the billion-dollar hotel chain with a boosted bid made last week. Marriott’s counter offer values Starwood at approximately $13.6 billion ($79.53 per share), consisting of $10.0 billion of Marriott International stock, based on the closing price of $73.16 on March 18, 2016, and $3.6 billion of cash, based on approximately 170 million outstanding Starwood shares. Both parties expect the deal to close mid-2016. For more information, visit marriott.com or starwoodhotels.com.