African Sun CEO steps down



Victoria Falls Stock Exchange listed hospitality group, African Sun Limited (ASL) CEO, Peter Saungweme (pictured), has stepped down from his role following a two year tenure, Business Times can report.

Lawrence Ward was subsequently appointed Acting CEO.

“The board expresses its gratitude and appreciation to Mr.(Peter) Saungweme for his steadfast leadership of the company over the past two years.

The board, management and staff congratulate (Peter) Saungweme on his achievements and wish him well as he enters a new chapter in his life.

Mr. (Lawrence) Ward has been appointed by the board as the Acting CEO with effect from 20 January 2024. With close to two decades of experience in the international hospitality industry, Mr. (Lawrence) Ward is well prepared to provide strategic guidance in this role.

The board has full confidence in Mr. (Lawrence) Ward’s ability to lead the company through this period of change.

His extensive expertise and established track record in the hospitality industry align seamlessly with our dedication to delivering excellence and value to all our stakeholders.

The board and management congratulate (Lawrence) Ward on his appointment and wish him all the best in his new role.

The board appreciates the ongoing support of the company’s shareholders and reaffirms its commitment to open, transparent communication as we embark on this exciting new chapter for ASL,” company secretary and governance executive, Venon Musimbe said.

In its trading update for the quarter to September 30, 2023, ASL reported a 12% revenue increase to US$14.6m, relative to the same period in 2022, largely due to firmer average daily rate spurred by higher demand from the meetings, incentives conferences and events  from the August 2023 election business.

Domestic business in the period under review generated 65% of revenue  compared to  77% in the prior comparative period, whilst international business was 35% from  23% in the same period in the previous year

Of the domestic business, 55% and 45% thereof was generated in United States dollars and Zimbabwe dollars respectively.

On an aggregate basis, 71% of the revenue was generated in United States dollars, reflecting an underlying economy that is gravitating towards the greenback.

On a year-to-date basis, the group earned 65% of the revenue in United States dollars.

Strong domestic business and the steadily recovering international arrivals contributed to the improved group performance for the period.

For the nine months ended 30 September 2023, the group achieved revenue of US$37m, 13% ahead of the comparative period.

The improving year-to-date revenue performance is driven by an average daily rate growth of 21%, and a 3 percentage points increase in occupancy from 45% in 2022 to close 2023 at 48%.

The hotel segment’s year-to-date occupancy for the nine months to 30 September 2023, at 48% is equal to the occupancy achieved for the full year in 2019 and the business is well on its way to a full recovery to pre-pandemic levels.


Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button