AccorHotels Buys FRHI for $2.89 Billion

AccorHotels has announced that it has purchased FRHI holdings—the parent company of the Fairmont, Swissotel and Raffles brands—for $840 million in cash and 46.7 million Accor shares.

The worth of the total purchase is approximately $2.89 billion, since the Accor shares are worth some $2.05 billion. The three FRHI brands consist of 115 hotels and resorts and 43,000 guest rooms, as well as an additional 40 hotels in development that will provide 13,000 rooms. AccorHotels has nearly 500 properties throughout the world.

FRHI has hotel and resorts in 34 countries across five continents—42 in North America, 28 in Asia-Pacific, 26 in Europe, 17 in Africa/Middle East and two in South America. They are in some of the world’s major tourist destinations, particularly in the United States.

“This is an outstanding opportunity to add three prestigious brands—Fairmont, Raffles and Swissotel—to our portfolio, and a great step forward for AccorHotels,” said Sebastien Bazin, chairman and chief executive officer of AccorHotels, in a statement. “It offers us robust and global leadership in luxury hotels, a key segment in terms of geographic reach, growth potential and profitability for long-term value creation.”

AccorHotels purchase FRHI Holdings from an ownership group that includes Qatar Investment Authority, Kingdom Holding Company of Saudi Arabia and an Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System company.

Sheikh Abdulla Bin Mohammed Bin Saud Al-Thani, CEO of Qatar Investment Authority (the country’s sovereign wealth fund), says that the sale of FRHI Holdings is the right step.

“Since making our investment, Fairmont Raffles Hotels International has become a leading luxury hotel company with an expanded international presence,” he said. “This deal generates the scale needed to drive the next phase of growth in our real estate and hospitality investments. QIA has confidence in AccorHotels and looks forward to becoming a significant shareholder.”

The transaction is subject to the regulatory approvals of the antitrust authorities.

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