Speculation mounts over a merger between Accor and IHG

Accor chief executive Sébastien Bazin.

Speculation is rising over a possible merger between French hotel giant Accor and UK-based InterContinental Hotels Group.

The potential merger would create the largest hotel company in the world, a title held by Marriott since its merger with Starwood.

No formal offers have been made, but shares in both companies have risen slightly after reports they had explored the idea of a merger.

It’s been a horror year for all hotel groups during the coronavirus pandemic, with shares in Accor down by 43 per cent so far this year and IHG’s stock down 23 per cent.

French news outlet Le Figaro’s report said Accor’s management board favoured a deal, with the group’s chairman and chief executive Sébastien Bazin setting up an internal task force to examine a potential merger.