* Buying Movenpick for 560 mln Swiss francs in cash
* AccorHotels sees takeover as boosting earnings
* Deal expected to be completed in H2 2018
* Movenpick has 84 hotels in 27 countries (Adds detail, background)
PARIS, April 30 (Reuters) - AccorHotels has agreed to buy rival Movenpick Hotels & Resorts for 560 million Swiss francs ($567 million), in a deal which Accor said would boost its earnings and marks the latest example of the French group’s ambitious takeover strategy.
Founded in 1973 in Switzerland, Movenpick Hotels & Resorts operates in 27 countries with 84 hotels, and has a strong presence in Europe and the Middle East.
AccorHotels said the deal would add to group earnings from the first year onwards of the acquisition being completed, which AccorHotels said should take place in the second half of 2018.
“With the acquisition of Mövenpick, we are consolidating our leadership in the European market and are further accelerating our growth in emerging markets, in particular in Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific,” said AccorHotels Chairman and Chief Executive Sebastien Bazin.
The Movenpick Hotels takeover follows other deals in previous years which have seen AccorHotels buying Mantra Group and FRHI, the owner of London’s Savoy and New York’s Plaza Hotels.
Earlier this month, Bazin told the AccorHotels annual shareholder meeting that the company would continue to focus on smaller, bolt-on deals in coming years.
Bazin, who took over in August 2013, has been cutting costs and expanding in China and the luxury hotels market, and has also made AccorHotels invest in new areas of businesses such as concierge services.
$1 = 0.9876 Swiss francs Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier and Amrutha Gayathri