Accor appoints regional COO for Middle East, Turkey and Africa


Paul Stevens

EMEA: Accor has appointed Paul Stevens as COO for the Middle East, Turkey and Africa, taking responsibility for the group’s premium, midscale and economy division in the region. 

The appointment follows a restructure at Accor, which saw the group split into two separate divisions for luxury and non-luxury.

In his new role, Stevens will oversee a portfolio of over two hundred hotels, comprising 52,000 keys across eleven brands. His responsibilities include new hotel developments and the conceptualisation and execution of operational and commercial strategies.

Throughout 2023, 18 hotels (4,259 keys) are scheduled to open in the region. These will include Mercure Dubai Deira, Novotel Kinshasa La Gombe in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Swissotel Bursa Uludag Mountain in Turkey, Movenpick Waad Al Shamal Turaif and Novotel Makkah Thakher City Residence in Saudi Arabia.

Stevens’ remit will include Accor brands such as Swissôtel, Pullman, Mövenpick, Novotel, ibis, ibis budget, ibis styles, Adagio, Grand Mercure, and Mövenpick and Novotel Suites. He will also be tasked with building and maintaining relationships with business partners, improving financial performance and maintaining levels of brand standards.

Speaking about his appointment, Stevens said: “This is an exciting time to be heading up operations for the premium, midscale and economy division in the region, with countries like Saudi Arabia opening up to tourism, and the Middle East and Africa becoming a hugely popular destination for both business and leisure travel.”

Having first joined Accor in 1997, Stevens has held a variety of roles within the group. In 2007 he was based out of the Bangkok office and came to hold the position of VP operations for midscale and economy brands in southeast Asia. Most recently, Stevens served as CEO of Accor’s loyalty program.

Stevens added: “Being in this role for Accor feels like a very natural progression after so many years with the brand. I have grown so much over my decades with the Group and for me to have reached this point in my career under the Accor brand is something that when I first joined back in the 1990s, seemed like a distant goal. I am extremely proud to have this honour and responsibility.”

Duncan O’Rourke, Accor’s CEO of premium, midscale and economy brands across the Middle East, Africa, Turkey and Asia Pacific, said: “I am delighted to welcome Paul to his new role. With his extensive knowledge and proven expertise, including senior management positions in global brands, and a track record which has shown him truly climb the Accor ladder, Paul is the perfect fit to lead the region. A loyal Accor team member, we trust Paul’s dedication and vision as he takes over this important new role in a critical region for the brand as it continues to grow.”

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