11 JUNE 2018
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Competition from travel packaging companies like Expedia and Booking.com is thought to be behind the surprise resumption last week by AccorHotels of its bid to buy the French government’s 14.3% stake in Air France KLM.
The hotel group issued a statement confirming the move after the French newspaper Les Echos said ministers were considering the sale and had “received interest” from Accor.
Accor noted it had held discussions over the past few years with the airline but added: “AccorHotels confirms having resumed its reflections on the matter, being at a very early stage of assessing the feasibility and potential terms and conditions.”
The statement said these terms and conditions would be discussed with Air France KLM "in due time" but cautioned: "There is no certainty these initiatives will lead to any agreement nor any form of implementation."
The move follows AccorHotels’ takeover earlier this year of the Swiss Mövenpick Hotels and Resorts group (BTN 7 May) as it continued its programme of acquisitions.
CEO Sébastien Bazin said then: “This transaction illustrates the strategy we intend to pursue … to seize tactical opportunities to strengthen our positions and consolidate our leaderships, as well as leverage our growth.”
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