• Accor quantifies rugby impact

Accor, the biggest hotelier in Europe, reported sales for the third quarter that it said confirmed the continuing pick-up that has been underway since the fourth quarter of 2006.

Hotels revenue was up 8.4% overall and up 5.5% on a like-for-like basis in the quarter. The company reckoned that the Rugby World Cup added 3.7 percentage points to the 11.4% growth in France.

The surge in France meant it overtook the UK as the best performer of Accor’s major markets. UK like-for-likes were up 6.7%.

While rugby provided a boost for France, comparisons with the soccer World Cup in Germany last year meant that the German figures were down 0.4% on a like-for-like basis.

Accor broke out its economy hotels performance – encompassing its Ibis, Etap and Formule 1 brands – and these showed a 10.2% increase in the UK on a like-for-like basis, against 6.0% in France and 3.0% in Germany.

The big boost provided by the sporting events was mainly in the upscale and midscale brands – Novotel, Mercure and Sofitel – with France seeing an 11.4% rise but Germany a 0.4% fall in the quarter.

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