French hotel group Accor has reported a strong half-year performance with operating profit before tax up 38.6% to €192m (£153m).
The solid set of results, which also saw like-for-like revenue increase 2.8% to €2,593m (£2,065m), were published alongside the announcement that HotelInvest, Accor's hotel owner business, has purchased a portfolio of 13 hotels from investment fund Tritax.
At a cost of €89m (£71m), the acquisition is part of the company's strategy, announced in November 2013, to consolidate its owned hotel base under HotelInvest, which now runs alongside Hotel Services, the operator and franchisor part of the business.
The portfolio include 12 Ibis hotels and one Ibis budget hotel, with a total of 1,194 bedrooms in Coventry, Coventry South, Birmingham Holloway Circus, Birmingham, Bordesley, Leicester, Plymouth, Sheffield, Liverpool, Manchester and London (Stratford, Thurrock and Barking).
Three Accor-owned F1 hotels adjacent to the properties in Liverpool, Barking and Thurrock will now be restructured as extensions of the newly acquired Ibis and Ibis Budget hotels to rationalise the HotelInvest portfolio.
John Ozinga, chief operating officer of HotelInvest, said the acquisitions are "an important step" in the restructuring of the company, which will see HotelInvest increasing the contribution of owned hotels from 54% in 2013 to more than 75% over the medium term.
The intention, explained Ozinga, is for Accor to become "the largest owner of economy and mid-scale hotels in key European markets".
Sébastien Bazien, chairman and chief executive of Accor, added: "The strong results for the period, with an increase in margins, reflect good momentum and the work of highly committed teams to deploy our new strategy. Each business now has the means to respond effectively to its specific challenges."
Accor is the owner and operator of 12 brands across more than 3,600 hotels worldwide, including Sofitel, Mercure, Novotel, Adagio and Ibis.