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Accor SA sees a 76% profit hike
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Accor SA, Europe's biggest hotel owner, said 2007 profit climbed 76 percent on real-estate disposals and stronger sales at higher-priced lodging chains.

Net income climbed to 883 million euros (US$1.3 billion), or 3.92 euros a share, from 501 million euros, or 2.23 euros, in 2006, Paris-based Accor said yesterday in a statement, according to Bloomberg News. That beat the 866-million-euro median estimate of 12 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News.

Accor sold European properties, the US economy chain Red Roof Inn, and a stake in the Go Voyage travel business to focus on running hotels and expanding its service voucher unit. European tourist arrivals rose four percent in 2007, according to the World Tourism Organization, bringing more visitors to Accor's midrange Novotel and Mercure hotels as well as the luxury Sofitel chain.

"Accor's business model is the best in the European hotels sector," said Guillaume Rascoussier, an analyst at Oddo Securities in Paris with a "buy" recommendation on the shares. "But we remain convinced that the industry's news flow will worsen."

(Shanghai Daily February 28, 2008)

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