Accor's Internet bookings in Asia-Pacific increased 63 per cent in 2004, compared to 2003, to 198,143 room nights.

“The regional increase was higher than the global increase of 44 per cent, reflecting the strength of the on-line market in countries such as Australia and New Zealand, and the rapidly emerging on-line use in a number of Asian countries, including China, Japan and Korea,” according to a report, which also added that in Australia and New Zealand, total business generated via Internet bookings doubled in 2004, and now represents 6.35 per cent of all Accor’s business compared to 3 per cent in 2003.

Recently, Accor and India’s travel and technology management company InterGlobe Enterprises entered into a joint venture agreement that represents a highly significant partnership for the Indian hospitality sector. InterGlobe Hotels, a 60:40 joint venture between InterGlobe Enterprises and Accor Asia Pacific, will invest in and develop a minimum of 25 ‘Ibis' brand economy hotels across India and South Asia over the next 10-12 years. The venture envisages an investment of US$195-200 million over this period.

Accor, reportedly, as extended its online booking system to allow travel agents to access it. In the past, travel agents had only been able to book via the web site on behalf of a company holding contracted rates with Accor, but now any travel agent with an IATA/TIDS number can make a booking online and earn commission.