February 27, 2018 / 5:36 PM / a year ago

AccorHotels announces long-awaited property spin-off

PARIS, Feb 27 (Reuters) - French hotel group AccorHotels said on Tuesday it had agreed to sell 55 percent of its AccorInvest property business to a group of sovereign and institutional investors for 4.4 billion euros ($5.3 billion).

The company announced plans to sell the majority holding to investors including Saudia Arabia’s PIF and Singapore’s GIC sovereign funds, as well as Credit Agricole Assurances , Colony NorthStar and Amundi.

Paris-based AccorHotels, which has more than 4,000 hotels ranging from luxury Sofitels to the budget Ibis brand, has said the stake sale will give it greater financial leeway to accelerate growth and fight the rising challenges from companies such as Airbnb and online travel agents.

AccorHotels had said last week that the long-delayed sale was imminent and hinted that it could trigger a special dividend. ($1 = 0.8181 euros) (Reporting by Laurence Frost. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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