Accor, the world’s leading hotel operator and market leader in Europe, has announced it has signed a franchise agreement with Focus Hotels, adding ten hotels to its UK network in the first quarter of 2011. This forms part of Accor’s aggressive expansion strategy to increase its UK network to 300 hotels by 2015.
Focus Hotels is a collection of quality midscale hotels with a wide variety of styles at a range of excellent locations throughout England. The group has systematically upgraded its product over the past few years, investing heavily in refurbishment and training with a view to identifying suitable franchising partners. The partnership with Mercure hotels will allow the ten hotels to retain their individuality and style whilst enabling them to reach an international market.
The franchise agreement means that 763 rooms will be added to the Mercure network. This expansion represents a major step in the development of the Mercure network in the UK, increasing its existing footprint from 33 to 43 hotels.
The hotels will join the Mercure brand, an established network of over 700 midscale hotels operating in more than 50 countries across the world. Mercure hotels guarantee the quality of a well-known brand, with the charm and personality of individual hotels.
Jean-Jacques Dessors, Chief Operating Officer of Accor UK and Ireland, said, “We are very excited to announce a deal that significantly increases Mercure’s presence across the UK. We have ambitious plans for the UK and we are totally committed to extending our Accor network and bringing our expertise in all segments from economy, midscale, upscale and luxury to the UK market.”
Peter Cashman, CEO of Focus Hotels said, “Our strategy in taking on these hotels, many of which were in administration, was to bring them up to a high standard and make them profitable, with a view to finding the right ‘home’ for them. I am a passionate believer in matching the brand to the property and we identified Mercure as the perfect partner for these ten hotels; Mercure will allow them to maintain their individuality and character whilst offering the credibility of one of the most respected international hotel brands.”
The new hotels, located nationwide, include:
Mercure Altrincham Bowden Hotel
Mercure Blackburn Ribble Valley Hotel
Mercure Chester North Hotel
Mercure Hatfield Oak Hotel
Mercure Hull Royal Hotel
Mercure Stafford South Penkridge Hotel
Mercure Swindon East Hotel & Spa
Mercure Telford Hotel
Mercure Wigan Oak Hotel
Mercure Wolverhampton Hotel