Company History

1938 Curtis L. Carlson founds and develops the Gold Bond Stamp Company.

1962 Gold Bond acquires its first Radisson® hotel in Minneapolis, Minnesota, marking the entrance of the company into the hotel business.

1973 Gold Bond changes its name to Carlson Companies.

1975 Carlson Companies acquires TGI FridaysSM

1987 Carlson Companies founds the Country Inns & Suites By CarlsonSM brand, opening its first hotel in Burnsville, Minnesota.

1994 Carlson Companies and the Accor Group combine business travel interests under the name Carlson Wagonlit Travel.

2000 Carlson Hotels acquires the Park Plaza® and Park Inn® brands from Olympus Hospitality Group.

2006 Carlson Companies changes its name to Carlson.

2008 Hubert Joly is named President and CEO. 

2012 Carlson goes to market with The Rezidor Hotel Group, creating the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. In August, Trudy Rautio is named President and CEO. 

2013 Carlson celebrates its 75th anniversary and Diana Nelson becomes chairman of the Carlson Board of Directors.