Accor will debut its midscale brand Novotel in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The news follows the signing of three properties during the Africa Hotel Investment Forum taking place in Ethiopia this week.
The group has partnered with Compagnie Hôtelière et Immobilière du Congo to open Novotel properties in the capital, Kinshasa, and its two major mining centres in the south, Lubumbashi and Kolwezi, introducing a total of 337 keys to sub-Saharan Africa’s largest country.
The agreement introduces Novotel’s signature relaxed and lively hospitality concept to Africa’s fourth-most populous nation and its most populous Francophone country, capitalising on a surging demand for modern hospitality concepts that meet the needs of its local communities and business travellers.
“With Africa tipped as the next global market and DRC one of the continent’s fastest-expanding economies with an affluent middle class, the time is right to introduce our flagship midscale lifestyle brand in three major growth markets,” said Mark Willis, chief executive, Accor Middle East & Africa.
“We are delighted to partner with local expert CHIC to develop Novotel’s presence in this global mining powerhouse, building on the success of the brand in other African destinations and bolstering our accelerated development strategy on the continent.”
DRC is the world’s largest producer of cobalt ore, a major producer of copper and diamonds, and has an estimated US$24 trillion in untapped mineral deposits.
Farhan Charaniya, head of development for CHIC mentioned: “CHIC, a company dedicated to the hospitality industry, is committed to making a contribution to the socio-economic development of the DRC, a country with an abundance of natural resources and human capital which is going to realise a considerable increase in business tourism.
“CHIC is focused on developing quality hotels across the country in support of DRC’s growth potential and we are delighted to be partnering with Accor in achieving this objective.”