African Sun occupancy slumps to 14% in Q1

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Harare, (New Ziana) – Hotel chain, African Sun saw its occupancy slump 26 percentage points to 14 percent in the first quarter of 2021 as the Covid-19 pandemic hit hard on tourism.

During the same period last year, before the onset of the killer virus, the chain recorded 40 percent occupancy.

The low occupancy resulted in African Sun posting an inflation adjusted revenue slump of $279.52 million compared to $784.82 million during the same period last year.

Resultantly, the group suffered a loss of $165.57 million.

“The 2021 first quarter results reflect the devastating impact that the Covid-19 second wave induced lockdowns and travel restrictions had on the business,” the group said in its first quarter update.

African Sun said it was banking on the domestic market to drive its occupancy up in the outlook.

“The key drivers of the domestic market will remain non-governmental organizations (“NGOs”), corporates and government business in the short-term,” the hotel chain said.

“We expect the growth to remain modest on the back of the government’s Covid-19 vaccination programme, with real impact likely to be felt in the last quarter of the year.”

African Sun is not expecting to earn much from international arrivals as “some of our key source markets are experiencing a resurgence in Covid-19 infections.”
New Ziana

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