Accor, which owns hotels ranging from the upscale Sofitel chain to the U.S-based Motel 6 low-budget brand, expects its earnings before interest and taxes, or Ebit, to reach between €510 million and €530 million (between $697 million and $724 million) this year after an "excellent" first half. The company's Ebit for 2010 was €446 million. Accor's competitor InterContinental Hotels Group PLC, which owns Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza brands, among others, recently said the travel industry has been resilient to economic upheavals so far. Accor also said it will speed up its plan to increase the number of hotels operated under franchise and management contracts. It also plans to sell property to raise cash and cut net debt. The project will cut adjusted net debt by €1 billion from 2013 to 2015. Get the full story at The Wall Street Journal Read also "Accor makes changes to its budget hotel chains" at USA TODAY