Our policy in the Luxury segment
For Chris Cahill, Chief Executive Officer Luxury Brands and Executive Committee member, AccorHotels also asserts its difference in its approach to luxury hospitality.
In 2016, AccorHotels signed more letters of commitment for new openings than ever before and we have about forty new luxury hotel addresses in the pipeline.
Did the acquisition of FRHI Group mean a change of scale for AccorHotels?
Yes, we are now the world’s second largest provider of luxury hotels, with nine brands. Luxury brands now make up one fourth of AccorHotels’ portfolio compared with just 15% two years ago.
How did the integration of the Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel brands go?
The integration happened very quickly and took place in a shorter window than originally anticipated. The creation of a dedicated luxury division, with brand heads in each region, was a key contributing factor. So was setting up a specific Talent & Culture team, as recruiting and retaining top talent is vital in the luxury business.
What are your current priorities?
We plan to develop the portfolio, particularly in luxury residences and currently have 40 projects of this kind in the pipeline. We also aim to strengthen all our operating processes so that we are sure our offer is always relevant. Of course, we also want to incite our teams to give their absolute best, because their commitment is the very essence of our profession.
World no. 2 in luxury hotels
+500 hotels in 72 countries
Lifestyle, a buoyant sector
The lifestyle sector is breathing new life into the hospitality industry, bringing friendliness, emotion and a touch of design. AccorHotels acted fast, very fast, to position itself in this buoyant segment. In 2014, it acquired a stake in pioneer lifestyle brand Mama Shelter. Then, in 2016, it bought 30% of 25hours Hotels and launched its own brand in the economy segment, Jo&Joe. 25hours Hotels already has seven addresses in Germany and Austria and has announced the opening of five new establishments in Europe. The Jo&Joe concept was created with the active contribution of future guests. It is a cheerful blend of the youth hostel, guest house and hotel formats. The first Jo&Joe will open in the spring of 2017, in Hossegor, a surf spot in south west France popular with millennials.
More than a hotel room, an experience
Interview with Thibault Viort, Group Chief Disruption and Growth Officer, and David Amsellem, CEO & Founder of John Paul, which was acquired by AccorHotels in 2016.
Why is the Group opening up to startups and new businesses now?
Thibault Viort: It all started with our guests and their new expectations. If the Group is to continue to develop, it must enrich its historical services and hospitality offering. Particularly, as new players are now providing alternatives that attract large numbers of travelers.
My task is therefore to seek growth, mostly by developing an ecosystem of startups around the Group, but also by fostering “intrapreneurship”, or in-house entrepreneurial initiatives. I am also responsible for ensuring that we implement the type of governance that suits these new businesses. The aim is to invent and anticipate, without hesitating to choose an alternative path.
Does John Paul illustrate this requirement?
Thibault Viort: Yes, absolutely. To boost our growth, we must imagine new services for our guests and the arrival of John Paul is completely in line with this objective.David Amsellem: Today, the hotel sector is experiencing in-depth transformation. We are no longer selling a hotel room, we are selling an experience. When planning their trips, travelers no longer simply think “I want to go to New York.” They are much more likely to think “I want to swim with dolphins.” To be able to offer these experiences we must know how to accompany travelers throughout the guest journey, and we must also know our guests perfectly. This expertise and knowledge are the core of John Paul’s business. However, the future is also about providing everyday services. The Group has 250,000 employees worldwide. That is a fabulous local network open around-the-clock, seven days a week. Everything still needs to be invented when it comes to proximity services and opening up to the city, and that’s precisely what we are going to be doing with the AccorLocal project.
We do not talk about ‘Human Resources’ anymore; now it's Talent & Culture!
One woman employee talking smiling to one man guest
Innovation & Transformation
Our passion for customers has made us a leader in our sector. Today, our Group is transforming from the inside to devise tomorrow's hospitality.