Accor to Buy Moevenpick for $567 Million as Alwaleed Sells Stake

(Bloomberg) -- Accor SA agreed to pay 560 million Swiss francs ($567 million) to buy Moevenpick Hotels and Resorts from shareholders including Prince Alwaleed bin Talal’s Kingdom Holding Co.

The deal marks the first publicly disclosed divestment by Alwaleed since he was released from detention in late January, after being held with hundreds of Saudi businessmen, state officials and princes in what the government called a crackdown on corruption. The prince, who owns a third of Moevenpick’s shares, said in a March interview that he’s hunting for deals again and plans to reshape his investment empire.

The transaction will add to Accor’s earnings from the first year, the Paris-based company said in a statement on Monday. Moevenpick operates upmarket hotels and resorts, mostly in Europe and the Middle East. The company plans to open 42 additional hotels by 2021 as it accelerates growth in emerging markets.

Accor has taken steps in recent years to diversify from budget hotels. The acquisition of Moevenpick follows its 2016 purchase of FRHI, the operator of the Fairmont, Raffles and Swissotel chains. The French company agreed earlier this month to purchase a 50 percent stake in South Africa’s Mantis Group as part of its expansion plans on the continent.

Kingdom Holding has been an investor in Moevenpick for almost 20 years, according to a separate statement. The company also has a stake in Accor.

In his March interview, Alwaleed said he’s likely to split his company’s $13 billion of assets through a spinoff of its domestic property and other holdings. Kingdom Holding’s domestic interests, most notably a 1 kilometer-high tower under construction in the Red Sea city of Jeddah, make up about half of the company’s assets.

The Moevenpick deal is expected to be completed in the second half.

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.