TA is not set up to benefit shareholders, but rather Hospitality Trust. Corporate governance is highly important, just look at Chesapeak Energy and their management debacle. With Hospitality controlling rents and TA's board, why should shareholders risk capital in TA when it is set up to benefit Hospitality?
If you believe in this space, go buy Hospitality Trust.
I am the first to agree about the HPT & TA relationship being negative. But investors have already licked the red off that candy long ago.
If that relationship bothers anyone so much, like me, then just focus on exactly what does TA own outright?
A partial listing would include about 20 wholly owned travel centers, 8 large parcels of undeveloped already zoned for building, cash, partnerships in a handful of other travel centers, a franchise business, cash flow, high-margin retail stores generating about $1.5B annual sales,, all profits from fuel sales, the corporate headquarters building. TA has NO mortgages or liens on these wholly owned assets-zero. Do that math...you will easily find just the FMV of TA's "owned" assets (that HPT has zero to do with) is probably 2x present book value. SO future profits and cash flows, purchasing under-valued travel centers at fire sale prices...that is all FREE.
I am LONG in spite of HPT...too much value here to ignore.
ps in fact I view TA as 2 companies...one with HPT and one without HPT...makes it easy for me to understand the parts