Rezidor started the year with a positive RevPAR development: The group’s Like-for-Like RevPAR increased by 9.8% in January and 8.1% in February. “The key driver for the lift in RevPAR was an increase in demand in most our markets across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The volume driven improvement came from various commercial initiatives, and led to a further gain of market share”, commented Wolfgang M. Neumann, President & CEO of Rezidor at the group’s Annual Business Conference 2013 in Riga, Latvija.
“The economic climate is still fragile and uncertain. The underlining trend has continued into March, but the month will be negatively impacted by the timing of Easter. We will continue to carefully monitor the development during the remainder of the year. Our initial results reflect the effective execution of our turnaround programme Route 2015”, continued Neumann.
In his key note speech to the 500 conference delegates – General Managers and Corporate/Area Management Teams – Neumann outlined his strategic focus where talent development and guest delight are the core drivers in pursuit of long term sustainable profits. He further underlined Rezidor’s commitment to profitable asset-light growth with a focus on Emerging Markets. All of the group’s five signings (1,037 rooms) in January, February and March to date were located in Russia/CIS and Africa, Rezidor’s core markets for future business development. The most recent key signing was the Radisson Blu Sheremetyevo Airport Hotel, Moscow (379 rooms, opening in Q2 2014). In early February Rezidor also opened an Emerging Market flagship property: the Radisson Blu Hotel, Maputo in Mozambique featuring 154 guest rooms.
Route 2015 is Rezidor’s guiding light in pursuit of the group’s strategy. The comprehensive turnaround programme was launched in December 2011 with the aim to increase the EBITDA margin by 6 to 8 percent by the year 2015. The programme puts a strong focus on Revenue Generation including: global synergies and activities with Rezidor’s strategic partner Carlson, cost-saving initiatives, accelerated Asset Management and further growth of the fee-based hotel portfolio especially in Emerging Markets.
Prior to the Annual Business Conference Rezidor’s Leadership Team demonstrated the group’s strong commitment to social responsibility: The 22 executives team – supported by the conference sponsor LG – dedicated an afternoon to support a local orphanage in Riga by painting a subsection of a children’s home.
During the ongoing conference Rezidor will also celebrate the farewell of Kurt Ritter, the group’s former President & CEO. Swiss-born hotelier Ritter has lead Rezidor from 1989 to the end of 2012 and was most probably the longest serving Chief Executive Officer of the hospitality industry. Under his management Rezidor grew from a small Scandinavian company to a global player, and became a member of the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group. “Kurt is a legendary leader who has built Rezidor from scratch and has given us our unique culture and image. We will build on his legacy and develop it further on our journey towards improved sustainable profitability”, said Wolfgang M. Neumann.