The Rezidor Hotel Group has signed 8 agreements for new hotels with a total of 1,400 rooms in the third quarter of 2013. 5 of these signings represent projects in Saudi Arabia, a key focus country for Rezidor. “Saudi Arabia has experienced continuous economic growth and offers considerable potential for our core brands Radisson Blu and Park Inn by Radisson. In line with our development strategy targeting a profitable, sustainable and asset-light growth in Emerging Markets and selected focus countries, we aim to further strengthen our presence in Saudi Arabia together with powerful regional partners”, commented Wolfgang M. Neumann, President & CEO at Rezidor. Besides Saudi Arabia, the group’s focus country list includes Russia, Nigeria and Turkey. Rezidor has also added a new country to its portfolio and signed the first Radisson Blu Hotel in Algiers, Algeria. The upper upscale property with 137 rooms in scheduled to open in Q1 2015. “We are delighted to arrive in Algeria where we are actively seeking further projects. This signing underlines the importance Africa has for us; across the continent we have 51 hotels with more than 11,300 rooms in operation or under development; in Northern Africa alone (Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya) we have14 hotels with more than 4,500 rooms”, said Elie Younes, Senior Vice President & Head of Group Development at Rezidor. In Northern Africa, Rezidor also opened the Radisson Blu Resort & Thalasso Hammamet in Tunisia in Q3 2013 with 274 rooms and a 1,400sqm spa.
The impact of Rezidor’s Asset Management focus is evident in mature European markets; especially in the Nordics where the group secured 20 years extensions for two of its most strategic and profitable hotels: The Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel Copenhagen and the Radisson Blu Royal Copenhagen which was Rezidor’s very first hotel and designed by Arne Jacobsen. The properties are currently under management agreements, but will be converted to lease agreements (from the beginning of 2014) which are prevalent in Copenhagen and the Nordics. The Radisson Blu SkyCity Hotel at Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport has added 30 guest rooms and 36 state-of-the-art meeting rooms, which were negotiated as part of the 2012 lease extension. In addition, the MEUR 13 renovation of the Radisson Blu Royal Garden Hotel, Trondheim is proceeding and scheduled to be completed in mid 2014. The renovation, which is jointly funded by Rezidor and the property owner, is designed to reposition the hotel at the top of the local market, and is in line with Rezidor’s focus of renovating profitable assets in conjunction with contract extensions.
“Such results show our continued success in constantly upgrading our leased hotels and improving the financial performance – a core element of our Route 2015 turnaround programme”, added Wolfgang M. Neumann. Through Route 2015, Rezidor aims to reach an EBITDA margin increase of 6-8% by the year 2015. In 2012, the programme already led to an EBITDA margin impact of 2.1%. Besides accelerated Asset Management projects, Route 2015 comprises Revenue Generation activities, a focus on fee based growth, cost savings, and cap utilization.