The performance of Accor hotels in Southern European countries was “very challenging” in the first half of the year.

The admission came as the French hotel giant reported a rise in net profit to €80 million in the six months to June 30 from €62 million a year earlier. This was based on a 3-6% increase in revenue to €2,717 million.

“Business volumes remained firm throughout the summer,” the company said.

“While visibility on the second half is still limited by the uncertain economic environment, Accor has not yet observed any tangible signs of a downturn in demand, except in southern Europe.”

Performance in July remained in line with first-half trends, with figures stable in Europe despite the deteriorating situation in the Southern countries, Accor added.

Like-for-like growth in the first six months of the year came to 3.5% in Accor’s upscale and midscale segment and 4% in the economy segment.

The company opened 141 hotels representing 20,700 rooms in the period, with more than half located in the Asia Pacific region.

“This expansion remains dynamic, with 108,700 rooms in the pipeline for the period to 2016,” the company said.

Accor agreed to sell its Motel 6 economy chain in the US to private equity firm Blackstone in May.