Listed hospitality group, Rainbow Tourism Group (RTG), is optimistic about the prospects of the tourism industry on the growth of arrivals after airlines resumed flights, Business Times can report.
The sector had been hard hit by the adverse impact of Covid-19 since March last year with governments across the globe imposing lockdown measures.
But RTG company secretary Tapiwa Mari is buoyant as more tourists are now able to travel into Zimbabwe after the relaxation of lockdown measures.
“The group remains optimistic about the prospects in the short to mid-term. International airlines such as British Airways have resumed flights into Victoria Falls with Qatar Airways coming into Harare for the first time. These developments should see growth in activity in Victoria Falls destination,” Mari said.
In the quarter to September 30, 2021, RTG reported increased volumes.
Hotel occupancies stood at 24% in the reviewed period from 23% reported in the prior comparative period.
Mari said the tightened level 4 lockdown restrictions in July and August affected the business operations during the third quarter.
During this period, restrictions on intercity travel and gatherings affected the business, particularly conferencing activities.
Mari said this is in contrast to the second quarter which experienced better business volumes due to the near-to-normal trading conditions under level 2 lockdowns.
The Gateway Stream division has continued to act as a critical anchor to the business during the Covid-19 period, RTG said.
Gateway’s various channels have experienced increased volumes during the third quarter compared to all other quarters during the year, with its business volumes growing 55% above the comparative quarter in 2020.
Mari said notable performance was recorded under Gateway Stream rooms (hotel rooms not owned by RTG) which sold rooms equivalent to 30% of the total RTG hotel rooms sold during the third quarter of 2021.
Other channels such as groceries, music and hardware have continued to record significantly increased volumes.
Heritage Expeditions Africa’s performance during the period was largely affected by the lockdowns.
The performance of the business mirrored the hotel business, however, the group will continue to capacitate the business to take advantage of the increasing domestic tourism, Mari said.
The group, the executive said, has remained in a strong trading position despite business interruptions due to Covid-19 induced lockdowns.
“A dogged focus on costs as complemented by speed in exploiting emerging revenue opportunities enabled the company to register strong performance in the quarter,” Mari said.
RTG is confident that the impact of the Covid-pandemic and the concomitant lockdown during the remaining part of the year will not have a negative impact on its financial performance for the year ending December 31 2021.
In the outlook, the group is optimistic about the prospects of the tourism industry in the short to medium term.
Mari said the stability in the operating environment is a positive development that will translate into increased activities.
In the outlook, the Gateway Stream will drive revenue growth and the group expects to see the full activation of all the 12 Gateway Stream revenue channels.