PARIS: The head of hotel company Accor has held talks with Chinese conglomerate HNA to try to thwart an attempt by another Chinese group Jin Jiang to increase its stake in the company, French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche reported on Sunday.

The paper said Accor’s Chief Executive Sebastien Bazin hoped to prevent Jin Jiang from increasing its stake to 29 per cent which would trigger a public offer.

Jin Jiang already holds 15.6 per cent of Accor’s listed shares, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Accor shares rose 3.3 per cent and were the biggest gainers in the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index on Friday, after another paper Le Figaro said Jin Jiang planned to increase its stake in Accor to 29 per cent.

“According to our information, the CEO of Accor Hotels, who declined to comment, is in contact with another Chinese group HNA, to counter Jin Jiang,” the Le Journal du Dimanche reported without citing its sources.

The French weekly newspaper said that another option, backed by several ministers, would be for the French state to take a 10 per cent stake in Accor.

HNA already has a 10 per cent holding in holiday group Pierre et Vacances and is in exclusive talks to take over Servair, Air France’s catering subsidiary.