"Executives are looking to other markets to diversify its offering. A 3 July deal to open 50 managed hotels in Angola is one example, while another, mentioned during a 30 July news conference outlining the French company’s H1 2015 earnings, is Iran, where CEO Sébastien Bazin said AccorHotels had 'true ambition.' Bazin said talks are in progress to open two hotels under the Novotel and Ibis brands in Tehran. Iran has been in talks with the United States, European Union and other allies concerning its nuclear program and to begin closer bilateral relations." (Hotel News Now, "Accor drives performance via diversification," 7/31/15)
"French operator AccorHotels is in advanced negotiations for two properties in Tehran under its ibis and Novotel brands. Christophe Landais, managing director Accor Middle East told Hotelier: 'We expect the recent agreements to potentially open up tremendous opportunities and rapid growth for the hospitality and tourism industry in Iran. AccorHotels is well positioned to play a leading role in the development of the hospitality and tourism industry throughout Iran. AccorHotels does not at present have any management agreements in place in Iran, however we are considering a number of potential opportunities across a broad range of segments.'" (Hotelier, "Hoteliers enter Iran race following nuclear deal," 7/16/15)
"This year’s opening of a four-star Axis hotel in Tehran under the management of France’s Accor, with a five star Axis Prime set to open soon nearby, is an indication of how fast things could change. Not since the Islamic revolution has a western company managed a hotel in Iran... Still it is not clear how Accor — Europe’s largest hotel group by number of rooms — secured the contract given continued sanctions. While the sanctions do not directly target the tourism industry, they prohibit the transfer of money to or from Iran unless for basic commodities or medicine... Accor is now poised to benefit from the doors opening to one of the world’s biggest untapped tourist destinations, home to huge and historic attractions such as Persepolis and Isfahan. Rumours are rife that other French groups are negotiating with Iran about the construction and management of hotels. Bouygues, the French construction, media and telecoms conglomerate, declined to comment, as did the UAE-based Rotana hotel management group, understood to be planning hotels in Tehran and the holy city of Mashhad." (Financial Times, "Hotel groups eye Iran tourism potential as santions deal nears", 6/22/15)
“Foreign visitors to Iran are the most visible effect of President Hassan Rouhani’s drive to mend ties with the U.S. and Europe, an influx that one his deputies said generated as much as $5 billion for the sanctions-hit economy over the past year. For the first time since the 1979 Islamic Revolution, international hotel chains are now plotting a return, while European airlines are adding or restoring links with Tehran…France’s Accor SA was aiming to build a hotel near Tehran’s Imam Khomeini Airport, according to Rahmani-Movahed, though the Paris-based company said that was premature.” (Bloomberg, “Iran Hotels Fill Up as Rouhani’s Rapprochement Lifts Tourism,” 5/21/14)
"UANI also called on the Novotel Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont hotel of the Accor Hotels Group and the Hotel Praia Ipanema to reverse their decision to host Iran's delegation [during this week's meeting of the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil] . . . Significantly, Accor North America operates more than 1,100 properties in the U.S. and Canada, including those of its brand chains Motel 6, Studio 6, Sofitel and Novotel. Accor has also received extensive lodging business from the U.S. government-in particular the U.S. Department of Defense." (UANI Press Release, "UANI Calls on Royal Tulip Hotel, Golden Tulip Hospitality, Accor Hotels to Reverse Decision to Host Iran's Ahmadinejad and Delegation this Week in Brazil," 6/19/12).