The new name has come about following a decision by the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) to organise its own event next year in Durban under the name HICA. As a result, Bench Events will rebrand as the ‘Africa Hotel Investment Forum’ (AHIF) going forward.
Bench Events Chairman and Founder, Jonathan Worsley, said: “We are making this announcement now in order to deal with any confusion there may be in the marketplace that the hotel investment event in Africa, aimed at the international investment community will now be known as The Africa Hotel Investment Forum. It will move around Africa providing a platform for education, networking and investment opportunities. We will be announcing our dates and venue shortly for 2012. Whilst Bench Events will no longer be associated with the HICA brand as organiser, we wish the TBCSA much success with their event in Durban and will continue to support their efforts and activities.”
Following the Casablanca event, an advisory board meeting made it clear that they were very enthusiastic to attend an investment conference that moved around Africa giving participants a chance to meet new contacts and to visit different high-growth destinations each year. Bench Events is currently working on a destination for the next hotel investment conference but is likely to take place in September 2012 in East Africa.
The hotel investment conference in Casablanca was exceptionally well-attended by top level decision makers. 350 delegates from 34 countries took part, including eight government ministers and officials, ‘C-level’ executives of over 40 companies and scores of senior managers from the international investment community and hotel industry. Mathew Weihs, Managing Director of Bench Events said: “Ten international sponsors are already committed to AHIF in 2012 and we aim to make a further announcement about this top-level conference in the coming weeks.”
Sponsors of our recent conference in Casablanca included: Accor; Actif Invest; African Export-Import Bank; Alhif Management; Alliances Development Immobilier; Anatara Hotels Resorts & Spas; ANIT; Carlson Rezidor; Corinthia Hotels; France 24; Grant Thornton Advisory Services; H Partners; Hilton Worldwide; Horwath HTL; Hyatt International LLC; InterContinental Hotels Group; Interedec; Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels; KZN Tourism; Madaef; Marriott International; Palmeraie Hotels and Resorts; Pam Golding Hotels; Perkins Eastman; PR Co; SMIT; Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide; T Capital (CFG Group); Tourism & Leisure Europraxis Consulting; W Hospitality Group and WATG