Accor co-founder dies at 91

Accor co-founder Gerard Pelisson has died aged 91.

Accor co-founder Gérard Pelisson has died aged 91 following a long illness, with the French hotel giant paying tribute to “an entrepreneur par excellence”.

Gérard founded Accor with business partner Paul Dubrule in 1967 and was instrumental in expanding into the US market after studying at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and working at IBM.

“Gérard bravely pursued the standardised hotel business model through the creation of US-inspired Novotel in Lille Lesquin, in 1967. This innovative endeavor would lay the foundation for today’s Accor,” Accor said in a statement.

Sébastien Bazin, Chairman and CEO of Accor, said Gérard was “an entrepreneur par excellence”.

“A true revolutionary of our industry who, together with Paul Dubrule, made Accor a global force to be reckoned with. With courage and determination, they fearlessly challenged conventions, reinvented hospitality, and forever altered the industry’s trajectory, making a global impact,” Bazin said.

“Gérard’s legacy lives on at Accor and we will all endeavor to embrace his daring spirit, mirroring his pursuit of excellence and passion for business. His vision and heart will forever be with us!”