RTG leverages on elections to boost revenue

Rainbow Towers Hotel and Conference Centre has been used as the National Command Centre for the elections and these elections will be no exception

THE Rainbow Tourism Group (RTG) says it will capitalise on opportunities provided by the upcoming elections to boost revenue and profits. Zimbabwe will hold its general elections on August 23, 2023.

“The group is set to take full advantage of the opportunities presented by the elections season,” chief executive Tendai Madziwanyika said in RTG’s 2022 annual report.

“Heritage Expeditions Africa will provide transfers and activities while hotels are geared to meet the accommodation and meal requirements of institutions and individuals alike that will be involved in the elections.

“Over the years the Rainbow Towers Hotel and Conference Centre has been used as the National Command Centre for the elections and these elections will be no exception.”

The RTG chief said the group anticipates a total rebound to pre-COVID-19 levels in 2023 with positive performance across all key indices. The group’s revenues for 2022 closed at ZW$24,5 billion, up 131% compared to the prior period.

Occupancy for the period under review closed at 51%, which was 65% above the prior year of 31%.

Growth in volumes was experienced across all the group’s business arms, the report showed.

The combined impact of Heritage Expeditions Africa and Gateway Stream drove RTG revenues, contributing 10%.

The group posted an earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of ZW$2,7 billion during the year under review, which was 29% above the prior period.

Strong revenue performances coupled with a relentless grip on costs were key drivers to a healthy EBITDA performance, it said. The group posted a profit after tax of ZW$1 billion, which was 10% above ZW$900 million recorded in 2021.

Heritage Expeditions Africa’s performance improved significantly compared to 2021 driven by an increase in tourism activities as mirrored by the performance of the hotels’ business.

The subsidiary is poised for a strong take-off in 2023, buoyed by continued recovery in international tourism.

The group's business model will continue on its strong long-term track record of generating significant capacity to enable investment plans that drive growth and fund a sustainably growing dividend.

RTG chairman Douglas Hoto said financial sustainability would continue underpinning the shift to value protection and creation.

“This requires an unwavering focus on disciplined, profitable growth that enables the group to invest in the future while providing an acceptable return to shareholders.

“Building a sustainable balance sheet with manageable levels of debt remains a primary material matter for RTG.

The group managed to extinguish its debt and maintained a robust plan to ensure the existing solid working capital base is sustained.”

He said the board was considering various options designed to increase value for shareholders.

These include expansion of the group’s hotels portfolio in carefully selected areas around Zimbabwe and a focus on technology and digitisation through the activation and expansion of the Gateway Stream web and mobile application.

The group will also focus on expanding its reach in the tourism value chain through investment in its tour operations arm, Heritage Expeditions Africa. RTG has six hotels namely The Rainbow Towers Hotel and Conference Centre, A' Zambezi River Lodge (Resort), Bulawayo Rainbow Hotel, Victoria Falls Rainbow Hotel (Resort), Bulawayo Rainbow Hotel (City), New Ambassador Hotel (City).

It also operates Heritage Expeditions Africa and Gateway Stream, an application that gives a one-stop marketplace for buying and selling products and services.

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