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Chairman & CEO Ousted From Accor Hotel Group

Published on Apr 23 2013 4:36 PM in Hotel

Chairman & CEO Ousted From Accor Hotel Group

Denis Hennequin, chairman and chief executive at Accor, has been ousted from his position at Europe's largest hotel group by rooms, having held the role for two years. Accor, which owns the Ibis, Sofitel, and Novotel hotel brands, stated that its board held a meeting on Tuesday 23 April at the request of Hennequin, at which the company’s directors jointly concluded that the strategy currently adopted by Accor was the correct one for the current economic climate. The board then decided to accelerate the implementation of the strategy, citing the current economic climate and the rapid transformation of the competitive environment. However, Mr Hennequin expressed his reservations about the implementation of the company strategy at the meeting. It is believed that Hennequin had recently come under increased pressure from the Group to split the hotel management and brands arm from its property holdings. 

In the wake of Hennequin’s resignation, Accor released a statement later the same day, which read: “The board took note of Denis Hennequin’s reservations and unanimously voted to terminate his mandate with immediate effect”. Mr Hennequin’s departure makes him the third CEO to have had an unscheduled exit since American private equity group Colony Capital took a stake in the company eight years ago. Yann Caillère will temporarily take on the role of CEO and chairman until Accor find a permanent replacement for Hennequin, who was a former chairman and chief executive of McDonald’s Europe. 

Accor executive committee member Caillère has been with the Group since January 2006 as Chief Operating Officer Hotels, France, Southern Europe, Africa, Middle East, and Sofitel Worldwide and in 2009 he took on the role of Europe, Middle East, Africa, Sofitel Worldwide, and Hotel Design and Construction Worldwide. He was appointed as deputy CEO in August 2010. 

Accor shares fell 2.1% to hit €25.41, a 10% decrease over the past month. They have lost almost two-thirds of their value since their peak in 2007. 

Commenting on Hennequin's resignation, Philippe Citerne, non-executive chairman of Accor's board of directors said, "On behalf of the Board, I would like to pay tribute to Denis Hennequin's new and creative perspective on the hospitality business and for the quality of our exchanges during his mandate as Chairman and CEO, and also at the time of his departure. I am confident in the future development of the Group."

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