The Accor Hotel Group is one of the world’s largest hotel groups, with more than 160,000 employees, properties in many different countries around the world, and with multiple brands in the portfolio. The Group, which is based in France, has been in business for over 45 years. Its main global competitors include InterContinental, Marriott and Starwood.
The Accor Group is a truly global operator with more than 3,500 hotels (450,000 rooms) in some 92 countries. Accor’s broad portfolio of hotel brands includes Sofitel, Pullman, MGallery, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Suite Novotel, Mercure, Aparthotels Adagio, ibis, ibis Styles, ibis budget and HotelF1. These cover as many market segments as possible from luxury through to economy, in order to appeal to as many consumers as possible. For instance:
• 5 star brands in the portfolio include Sofitel
• 4 star brands in the portfolio include Novotel
• 3 star brands in the portfolio include ibis
• 2 star brands in the portfolio include Hotel F1
It is noteworthy that the Accor Group’s loyalty program, Le Club Accor, has more than 10 million members, as well as that that globally 28% of customer sales are online.
Looking at the Accor Group’s business by location, and the number of hotels illustrates the current geographical spread of the business. The spread is as follows: France (1515 hotels – 31% of the business), rest of Europe (1038 hotels – also 31% of the business) and the Asia-Pacific (553 hotels – 23% of the business). Beyond this, they are located in Latin America and the Caribbean (226 hotels – 8% of the business) and Africa and the Middle East (166 hotels – 6% of the business). The Group only has 17 hotels in North America, representing just 1% of the hotel business.
All these hotel properties can essentially be divided into three segments (the luxury, mid-market, and economy segments), with the Group owning brands in each of these. In the luxury segment Accor has a total of 300 hotels. Its luxury brands include Sofitel (121 hotels in 40 countries), Pullman (78 hotels in 23 countries), MGallery (58 hotels in 21 countries) and Grand Mercure (14 hotels). In the mid-market segment Accor has a total of 1,243 hotels. Its brands in this segment include Novotel (395 hotels in 60 countries), Suites Novotel (29 hotels in 8 countries), Mercure (732 hotels in 50 countries) and Adagio (87 apartment hotels in 7 countries). In the economy segment Accor has a total of 1600 hotels. There are three ibis brands in this segment as well as Hotel F1. They are respectively – ibis (983 hotels in 58 countries), ibis Styles (192 hotels in 18 countries), ibis budget (492 hotels in 17 countries) and HotelF1 (240 hotels).
Recent growth has been substantial. In 2012 alone the Accor Group opened 210 hotels (30,000 rooms). The new hotel properties that Accor has been opening have principally been in emerging markets, with the great majority of these hotels opened under management and franchise arrangements. In Australia and New Zealand the Accor
© Chifley Business School Unit: 401 – Marketing Assessment Pack: 401 – 001
Version 1.0 Page 9 Date: 15th December 2014
Group acquired 42 Mirvac hotels in the last couple of years. These have been, or are in the process of being rebranded as Accor brands. Accor has however retained the Sebel brand (18 hotels), since this is a strong brand in Australasia. By way of a contrast Accor has divested the Motel 6 brand in the United States.
In late 2013 the Accor Group announced that it would be dividing its hotel business in two in a bid to improve the group’s performance and boost shareholder returns. Accor is being split into a fee-oriented hotel operator and franchisor, HotelServices, and a hotel owner and investor, HotelInvest. Under the new plan, HotelServices will operate nearly 3,600 hotels. HotelInvest will start with a portfolio of 1,400 hotels of which nearly 300 are in full ownership. All 1,400 hotels of these hotels will be operated by HotelServices through contracts. The Group envisages that by 2016, the hotel portfolio will comprise 40% managed hotels, 40% franchised hotels and 20% owned and leased hotels. The new strategy will mark an end to expansion through leases since Accor’s profit margins have lagged the profit margins of some of its peers. This is because a large part of its hotels are owned or leased, generating lower profitability and returns on invested capital than franchise hotels or those under management contracts. Under the new structure some central services will be shared between HotelServices and HotelInvest. For the purposes of this assignment you can assume that marketing is one of the shared services. Branding is a very important part of marketing for the Group, given the diversity and the reach of its hotel brand portfolio.
Accor 2012 Annual Report, www.accor.com
Accor To Redefine Business To Boost Performance – Update, www.nasdaq.com/article/accor-to-redefine-business-to-boost-performance—update-20131127-00014#ixzz2qN00h4Uf
This assignment focuses on both the HotelInvest and HotelServices side of the Accor Group, and you should assume that you work in a marketing role at the Group’s Head Office in France. Your task is not to write a marketing plan for the Group, but rather to undertake some market analysis for the Group, essentially demonstrating the role of market auditing and planning. In doing so your analysis should specifically address each of the following points. This is the Brief that you have been tasked with!
Q: Why would the Accor Group undertake formal marketing auditing and marketing planning as activities within the marketing function at Head Office? What is the link between auditing, planning and corporate strategy? Do not simply discuss these broadly—apply the concepts directly to the Accor Group.
Q: How might Accor use specific business tools to assist it to undertake formal marketing auditing and planning? Provide four brief examples, focusing on one or more of the three segments targeted or one or more of the Accor brands in one of the segments. Note: do not describe the business tools at length, rather explain how they might be used.
Q: Thinking specifically of the hotel market, what are the most important factors in Accor’s micro-environment in one of the geographical regions where it has a lot of hotels? Briefly describe them (including the single most important one) and explain the reasons for their importance.
Q: How could Accor use marketing research and marketing intelligence to assist it to undertake marketing planning and implement marketing strategy in one or more of the different segments targeted or for one or more of the Accor brands? Provide a specific marketing research and a specific marketing intelligence example.
Q: How could Accor use segmentation and specific segmentation variables like demographics, psychographics, buyer-graphics and geographics in one of the different segments targeted or? Provide a specific example.
Q: How could an understanding of market positioning be of assistance to Accor for one or more of the Accor brands in one of the three segments targeted. Provide a specific example.
Q: How could an understanding of buyer behaviour be of assistance to Accor for one or more of the Accor brands in one of the three segments targeted? Provide a specific example.
Q: Ultimately, your report should demonstrate that you understand the linkages between marketing audits, marketing plans and marketing strategies, and their relationships with each of the concepts or thematic areas above. Your report should also demonstrate that you can apply these to the Accor Group
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