In February, Accor and Sbe announced a plan to open more than 100 Umami Burger restaurants within Accor hotels by 2026. It’s a move that expands Accor further outside the traditional hotel sector – what the company calls augmented hospitality.
Accor’s Philip Basha, vice president of corporate finance says Accor has identified lifestyle and luxury lifestyle as being a major part of their growth initiative – they’ve made many acquisitions in this space, the largest of which is SBE. As part of lifestyle, it’s not only hotels, it’s food and beverage, which was a major, major driver for (Accor) in making the investment in SBE. And it’s food and beverage because Accor has a lot of hotels they feel are in need of more activation, more lifestyle emphasis. Umami is a natural, easy way for them to get immediate traction in their existing hotels and their new hotels to add that lifestyle component, because that’s what Umami is all about.
Jay Patel, chief financial officer at Sbe Lifestyle Hospitality’s Disruptive Group says that Accor effectively has over 4,500 hotels in every market all over the world, so for Umami, for instance, with our locations in Japan, we’ve seen a huge, huge increase in demand. We just opened our fourth one there. And they’re experiencing three-hour waits with people lining up outside the door every single day. So, we’re seeing especially in the Asian market there’s a huge demand, and if you look at some of Accor’s midscale hotel brands, they don’t have a standardised food and beverage offering.
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