Radisson Hotel Group ‘prudently optimistic’ of two-year recovery

Published: 30 October 2020 - 3 a.m.
By: Josh Corder
Global operator Radisson Hotel Group has said it is ‘prudently optimistic’ it can recover from the COVID-19 battering within two years from now.

That’s according to Radisson CEO Federico J. González who spoke at this year’s Future Hospitality Summit in Saudi Arabia. Joined by CNN’s John Defterios, and Cyril Ranque, president of Travel Partners Group, Expedia Group, the trio discussed the importance of planning in times of crisis.

Recovery for the rest of hotel sector is forecasted for 2024/2025, said the group, citing figures from STR. Radisson, however, said they’re looking at a 2022 timeline thanks to drastic measures taken this year and a resilient development plan for the Middle East and other key markets.

González said, “One of Radisson Hotel Group’s core beliefs are “we are many minds, with one mindset”. This time has most certainly proven that we need to stand together as we are all faced with common challenges. In times like these, we need to look ahead to the future, inspire our teams and remind them that there will be an end to this crisis, and that the hospitality industry will come back stronger than ever.”

Once out the other side of the pandemic, Radisson is confident the industry will receive more investment into both its public and private sectors. Optimistic of recovery, Radisson has gone ahead with development plans in 2020 as part of an existing five-year game plan penned before coronavirus.

Forty signings have been announced in 2020 so far, adding to the 1,100 hotels in operation and 300 in the pipeline.

The CEO added that the Middle East region remains a key focus for Radisson – particularly KSA. With more than 20 hotels, resorts and serviced apartments in operation at the time of writing, Radisson Hotel Group aims to double its Saudi Arabia portfolio by 2025. It recently opened the Park Inn by Radisson Jeddah Madinah Road, with another opening coming up later this year, as well as the addition of five hotels to its portfolio in 2021.

“We need to continue personalising the standards for our guests and working with our operational teams to deliver these standards. This will reinforce our image and position as a serious operator. Everyone will apply certain standards but what will be different is the “how” - how receptive we are to the consumer, and how quickly we can apply these standards. This will give us an advantage to attract more guests, investors, and hotels,” added González.

Competitors Accor and IHG both posted Q3 2020 results this month, laying bare the impact of the virus.

For Accor, revenue came in at €329 million, down by 68.7 percent as reported and by 63.7 percent like-for-like. RevPAR also saw sizable drops, falling by 62.8 percent in Q3 2020.

IHG meanwhile reported RevPAR drops of 53 percent and an occupancy rate of 44 percent. RevPar was down 65 percent in the Middle East.

Hotelier has not yet seen Radisson’s results for the quarter.

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