By Georges Panayotis
Much progress has been made over the past 40 years in the accommodations sector! The new chain concepts have enabled the hotel business to develop considerably in France and Europe and, for some, in the rest of the world. Hotel groups are now number 1 on the old continent and the French hotel industry is one of the largest in Europe. This industry is thriving with very positive growth prospects and it is in full development. More tourists are arriving from all horizons and going to all destinations, what could be better!
Our sector has become a magnet for young graduates. The days when the hotel business was a guild of innkeepers are over. The tourism industry offers opportunities to make any investor or entrepreneur dream. And to top it all off, this little world is collaborating and boundaries are being broken down.
Real estate companies are working closely with franchisors to redefine products, franchisees are looking at a variety of brands to choose the right one based on potential demand and the location of their properties. Even builders are contributing their expertise to define their orders as they have a more complete view of technological developments. Professionals are clearly gravitating towards our sector. This is demonstrated by the success of our events that has forced us to push the walls in order to welcome them all. It is our great satisfaction to see participants exchange, share, celebrate innovation and all the transformations taking place in the sector. While some still lag behind, the movement is clearly underway.
All these professionals who come together to share, debate and react are the driving forces of our sector. While their interests may diverge, the debate moves us forward and, in the end, everything is resolved as a family. The hotel business, once Colbertist in character, is now an open universe that while it certainly includes hotels in the strict and historical sense of the term (independent and undersigned) now also includes residences, residential leisure parks, hostels, hybrid establishments, a host of new concepts and so on… This is because of upheavals in recent decades, we agree, but the observation remains. The sector is changing and so much the better! It will come as no surprise that those specializing in decline are on their way out since there is no decline and, in our opinion, there will not be one.
Investors are present, they have changed their image; while they sometimes shun France a little, they have a few years to catch up in terms of CAPEX, but they are there. Whether they are owners or single or multi-brand franchisees, all are ready to take risks and roll up their sleeves to create and progress. Professionals are also ready to roll out the red carpet for the Caisse des Dépôts, or any other French and foreign investor that effectively accompanies this change
However, it is our duty to promote the talents, imagination and creativity of our employees. It is thanks to them that we will be able to remain competitive by constantly developing our businesses and especially our products and concepts. We must make the new generations feel the potential for happiness and fulfillment in our professions and make our industry sexy and attractive. We must encourage employees at the bottom of the ladder to invest themselves in a long-term career in the hotel business and give them a glimpse of boundless career prospects. Many of the sector's managers and executives began at the bottom and have patiently climbed their way up to positions where they are now thriving.
Edouard Philippe has established the Inter-ministerial Tourism Council to bring together accommodation providers, tour operators, destinations… Minister Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne announced he would draw inspiration from our work to inform the government's deliberations. We would be delighted to welcome the Prime Minister at the next Global Lodging Forum to present a plan of action to effectively support our profession and promote its development and profitability.
We are undergoing a metamorphosis and are certainly not in our last molt. Many changes have already been made, but we will not go over them here. Make way for the future, for the development of our collaborations; We will always be there to gather, learn, analyze, debate and exchange, in short to detect, defend and accompany all these changes because we adore loving and building.