Saturday, Aug 17, 2019
Tourism & Culture | Africa | Egypt

Tourism Egypt

Egoth plays a big role in the tourism sector


3 months ago

Mr. Sherif Mohamed Salah Bendary, Chairman and Managing Director, EGOTH
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Mr. Sherif Mohamed Salah Bendary

Chairman and Managing Director, EGOTH

EGOTH operates several internationally iconic hotels spread across Egypt – in Luxor, Aswan, Cairo, Giza, the Red Sea and Alexandria – and owns three hotel institutes in Alexandria, Luxor and Ismailia that award diplomas in tourism and hotels. To tell us more about the company and the Egyptian tourism industry, we spoke to Chairman and Managing Director, Sherif Mohamed Salah Bendary.

 

Since the end of 2016, government has been taking bold steps towards reforming the economy with the ultimate goal of achieving macroeconomic stability and real inclusive growth. Two years after the major reform implementation, what is your current view of the Egyptian economy?

Tourism has definitely improved. Our company was able to overcome the crisis and the problems it faced during the past few years due to the country’s situation.  We had taken loans from local banks. We used these loans to develop our hotels during the past stagnant period and the weak tourism period. We were able to develop Mena House. We were lucky that Marriott, one of the biggest international companies, was the one to sign the contract to take over the administration of Mena house. It definitely had some conditions and remarks, but we were able to negotiate and meet in the middle. The hotel achieved great results in 2018, from 1st February to the 31st of December. This is due to the stability that occurred in Egypt and the increase in tourism, as well as the great administration. The hotel was rated as one of the best 100 tourist sites worldwide. We are continually developing our hotels. We did not only develop Mena house, but also Marriott Cairo, Jezirah and Zamalek Tower. We added new outlets. We care very much for our customers and visitors and we therefore try to provide them with everything they might need.

Our progress is one of the success of our country. We’ll talk about our field only. Implementing the word success in our country depends on our development in our sectors. Tourism sector is one of the biggest sector in Egypt and brings a lot of income. The increase in number of tourists in Egypt depends on the security situation. The safer the country, the more the tourists. This is where Egoth plays its role. We are investing in hotels because we now have a more stable country. We have prepared it for the increase in tourism.

 

Tourism represents between 15-20% of Egypt’s GDP. It’s a key generator of employment. The goal is to have 1 out of 4 households employed by the sector. Could you please comment on the importance and impact of the tourism sector on the Egyptian economy?

It definitely provides a lot of job opportunities. We invest in employees. Many other sectors are dependent on tourism.  When the number of tourists increases, employment also increases.

 

You are a key enabler of foreign investment in the country. What role do you think Egoth plays within the tourism sector of Egypt?

Egoth plays a big role in the tourism sector. It has historical hotels that accommodate the prestigious, important visitors, and therefore must be well prepared. We have five institutes of hotels. We design these institutes to provide skilled and trained workers to the tourism sector. Back in 2011, during the revolution, people had joining hotel institutions. We decided to develop our courses and education system and were able to attract them one more by providing job offers and trainings for the graduates in our own hotels, which definitely serves the economy. We also provide trainings for other employees. We help developing students and employees. We offered language courses, such as Chinese, because we realized that there are a lot of tourists coming from China. We therefore decided to develop and improve ourselves. We try to provide the languages needed, in our institutions, based on the number of tourist coming from different countries. I also want to add that tourists come from many different countries.

 

You own some iconic hotels across Egypt, and you are constantly working with international partners. I wanted to ask your opinion on the impact of Egoth on the international partners?

Egoth has been dealing with international companies ever since its establishment. We are the first company to implement the idea of partnership with international companies. We haven’t just started having international partners, but ever since we started working in Egoth, we had several international partners like Meridian, Sheraton, Marriott, Moevenpick, etc. We trust the process and our partnership. We offer all our hotels to the international companies and believe that this is the right way in which we can offer good services to attract tourists.

We believe that by having international known brands, tourists will be coming to Egypt, unlike if we use unknown brands and names. We feel that this promotes tourism in our country. We own globally known hotels, thanks to their historical locations and great administration from the international partners. We also have a strong relationship with our partners; whenever we face problems in the contract or so, we always find a solution together. They trust us and our products very much. We believe that this is the role and the importance of international partnerships.

 

In terms of financial, since 2014 you’ve been seeing impressive growth. You mentioned from 2015-2016, the fiscal year to 2016-2017, you increased profit by more than 85%. What has been your sudden unique preposition that has allowed you to have such impressive growth since 2014?

There are several reasons. Firstly, was the stability that has occurred in Egypt. Egypt is becoming more stable every day, politically, which makes people feel safe to come and visit. Stability also means that there are new investments in the Egyptian economy. If we were not stable, we wouldn’t have had tourists. We, Egoth, are always ready for any situations. We therefore believe that Egypt is resilient and stable no matter what happens and it will remain stable. Egypt is a leading country and the biggest in the middle east. Tourism is a very big sector that strongly affects Egypt’s GDP. Therefore, we were always keen on investing and providing whatever we can to be able to accommodate tourists and investors and fulfill all their needs. We don’t only have 5-star hotels, we also have 3-star and 4-star hotels to suit everyone’s needs with different incomes and from different classes.

We’ll are going to have a new resort in Marsa Alam. We also want to invest more in the Red Sea area. We are still looking into an area in the south named Ras Banias. We still haven’t decided whether to invest in or not.

 

How do you plan to implement these projects? Will you also be working with international partners?

In this project, we work with our partners from the holding and sister company. After we complete the project, we will offer it to international companies to operate it. Our policy is to own buildings, hotels, etc. and the international companies operate them.

 

 


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