Sommet Education Foundation under high patronage of Accor to develop Indian Talent Development Initiative

Indian School of Hospitality (ISH) and Sommet Education, the distinguished leaders in hospitality education, have announced a pioneering collaboration with Accora global leader in hospitality, unveiling the Indian Talent Development Initiative.


The three-year alliance, which aims to invest in the skills of Indian youth and deliver opportunities for growth in the thriving hospitality industry, was officialised at HICSA 2024, the 19th Hotel Investment Conference in Bengaluru. It will be led by Sommet Education Foundation, with Accor serving as its founding patron.

Under the initiative, Sommet Education Foundation and Accor will sponsor 16 deserving individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds to enrol on ISH’s Intensive Culinary Arts Programme and Intensive Pastry and Bakery Programme. Each intake will consist of five or six students, with the program scheduled to commence in August 2024, followed by subsequent intakes in January 2025 and January 2026.

“As a prominent hospitality education institution, we recognise the transformative potential of the Indian Talent Development Initiative to uplift and inspire individuals aiming to make a difference in the hospitality sector,” explained Kunal Vasudeva, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Indian School of Hospitality. “ISH is dedicated to providing top-tier training and exceptional learning experiences to nurture a generation of new talents for hospitality who will set new benchmarks and create lasting impact on the future of hospitality.”

Anne-Sophie Beraud, Accor’s SVP Diversity, Inclusion & Social Care, said: “As a leading hospitality group, we acknowledge the significance of investing in the next generation of talent. We want to guarantee each of our talent the opportunities to reach their full potential by preventing inequalities and discrimination. The success of our employees must not be determined by diplomas, neither origins nor nationalities. Supporting Sommet Education Foundation and developing this first initiative signifies our devotion to bringing positive change by providing world-class education and hands-on training for the aspiring youth in India.”

”At Sommet Education, we believe in the power of education to drive positive change and create pathways to success,” commented Sommet Education Foundation Vice-President Executive Anouck Weiss. “Through the Indian Talent Development Initiative, we are proud to join forces with Accor to support talent development and foster social inclusion in India’s hospitality sector. By offering scholarships and employment opportunities, we aim to empower individuals with the necessary skills and resources to emerge as change agents of the future.”

Kunal Vasudeva, Co-Founder and Managing Director, ISH; Sébastien Bazin, CEO, Accor; Anouck Weiss, VP Executive, Sommet Education

The Indian School of Hospitality, recognised for its dedication to excellence in hospitality education, will play a vital role in driving the success of the initiative. With its state-of-the-art facilities and highly proficient faculty, it will deliver valuable support by offering world-class training and facilitating immersive learning experiences for sponsored students.

ISH has carved a distinctive reputation in hospitality management and culinary arts programs in association with renowned global education institutions such as internationally recognised culinary school École Ducasse, France, and Les Roches, Switzerland. As a part of Sommet Education’s global network of 20 campuses across 10 countries, ISH is committed to empowering students and nurturing them into influential leaders within the hospitality industry.

These programs are designed to fast-track culinary careers and will incorporate a three-month on-the-job immersion at Accor, followed by pre-qualified employment contracts that assure 100% employability for the students.

India’s tourism and hospitality sector has experienced significant growth in recent years, emerging as one of the key contributors to the country’s economy. According to Mordor Intelligence, the Indian hospitality industry is projected to reach $24.61 billion in 2024, with further growth expected to touch $31.01 billion by 2029, demonstrating a robust compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.73%.

However, despite these promising figures the rate of youth unemployment is still considerably high in India, as according to the Indian Employment Report over 82% of the total unemployed population consists of youths.

To address this significant challenge, the partners are dedicated to promoting sustainable growth, addressing employment gaps, and empowering individuals from underserved communities to pursue rewarding careers in hospitality.

The launch of the Indian Talent Development Initiative is testament to the shared vision and dedication of Sommet Education, ISH and Accor towards promoting talent development, fostering social equality, and bolstering economic growth in India. This unique initiative will also create new avenues for development and elevate the standards and prospects of the hospitality sector in India.