Change in Africa Spells Investment Opportunity
Major Hotel brands move into Africa
· Political change may create further investment opportunity
In recent times Africa has increasingly become the focus of international hotel chains and many recognise that development potential is huge and operators such as Rezidor, Accor, IHG and Marriott are now locating development directors on the continent. Driving hotel growth across Africa is both due to the extensive oil and mineral wealth and a unique diversity of cultures, wildlife and landscape across 53 countries which are attracting a growing numbers of tourists.
Managing Director of industry consultants W Hospitality Group, Trevor Ward, said “we have seen the major international brands focusing more and more on sub-Saharan Africa in recent years, evidence of their growing acknowledgement that many of the region’s nations hold great potential. They have been involved in North Africa for many years, particularly in Egypt, due to the more mature tourism industry there. Civil unrest in parts of North Africa is inevitably going to slow the pace of development of new hotels there, but I see that as a temporary setback, with a rebound once the ‘hot spots’ stabilise again. New governments in these countries may, indeed, lead to new opportunities as growth through tourism development is raised up the political agenda.”
Trevor further commented that “Sub-Saharan Africa has, so far, been unaffected by the unrest in the north of the continent, and there is considerable development activity taking place in Nigeria, where InterContinental and Radisson Blu both have deluxe hotels under construction, and in Angola, where another InterContinental Hotel is due to open soon. Best Western has finally established a presence in West Africa, with three hotels open in Nigeria and a fourth in Accra, Ghana. The company has also signed up new hotels in Tanzania, South Africa, Kenya and Nairobi, with a second hotel in the pipeline in Takoradi, Ghana’s new oil capital”.
Jonathan Worsley, Chairman of Bench Events commented “we have been aware for sometime of the potential that Africa holds for the hotel investment sector and whilst there are many challenges facing investors, there is no escaping the fact that the rewards from successful development in Africa can be immense”.
Bench Events in association with SMIT (Moroccan Tourism Development Agency) and the Tourism Business Council of South Africa will explore the opportunities in detail at the Hotel Investment Conference (HICA), Hyatt Regency, Casablanca, Morocco, 26-27 September 2011. Panel sessions will focus on the risks and rewards associated with developing hotels across Africa, those countries offering the most attractive returns and in depth review of successful case studies.
Keynote speakers will include Nenad Pacek, President and co-founder, CEEMEA Group, one of the world’s leading authorities on emerging markets, advising business leaders on key opportunities and challenges and helping them to craft successful strategies; and Chris Luebkeman, Chris runs the Global Foresight + Innovation initiative at Arup, a global design and engineering firm and a leading creative force behind many of the world's most innovative projects and structures.
In addition to the event in Morocco, the TBCSA in association with Bench Events will also stage a separate HICA conference just before INDABA on 5-6 May that will focus on Southern Africa.
Further information for HICA, Morocco visit www.africa-conference.com
Further Information for HICA – Durban visit www.hica.co.za
HICA is organised by Bench Events in association with SMIT and the TBCSA.
Sponsors of HICA Morocco
HICA is sponsored by Accor; Corinthia Hotels; Marriott; Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels; Actif Invest; Alhif; Alliances; Anantara Hotels, Resorts, Spas; Horwath HTL; h partners; Hyatt; Interedec; Madaef; Starwood Hotels and Resorts; Tourism & Leisure Europraxis Consulting; T Capital and W Hospitality Group.
ANIT, EHL and WTTC.
About Bench Events
Bench Events has a long track record in co-hosting the premier hotel investment events in Europe and the Middle East. Bench Events’ Chairman, Jonathan Worsley, is one of the organisers and founders of the highly successful International Hotel Investment Forum now in its fourteenth year (www.berlinconference.com). In 2005, he was responsible for launching the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference in Dubai (www.arabianconference.com); in 2008 launched the Russia & CIS Hotel Investment Conference (www.russia-cisconference.com). In 2011 Bench Events co-hosted the Central Asia and Turkey Hotel Investment Conference (www.cathic.com), and will launch Hotel Investment Conference Africa, in Morocco. www.africa-conference.com
Bench Events’ sister company, JW Bench, is a benchmarking company that has successfully launched the Conference Bench and the Productivity Bench. An industry first, the Conference Bench, measures performance data for conference and banqueting space in 10 cities throughout Europe and the Middle East. www.benchevents.com
About the Tourism Business Council of South Africa
The Tourism Business Council of South Africa is the official umbrella organisation for the travel and tourism private sector in South Africa. As a corporate association, the TBCSA strives to work together with all role players to create an enabling environment for growth and development of the tourism industry. The TBCSA originated the HICA concept (www.hica.co.za) in 2007 and is the primary driver behind this annual industry event for Southern Africa.
The TBCSA (www.tbcsa.travel) is made up of paying members from key travel and tourism associations, leading businesses as well as large corporations, who operate outside of the tourism sphere but recognise the overall value of tourism to the economy.