AccorHotels buys 50% stake in South African luxury travel firm Mantis Group
AccorHotels, Europe's biggest hotel operator, has said it is going to buy a 50% stake in South Africa’s Mantis Group, as it tries to expand its presence in Africa and the luxury travel market.
The buyout will add 28 new hotels to the group’s portfolio from across the world.
Through the transaction, AccorHotels, which achieved a double-digit increase in revenue through acquisitions last year, has now taken a 50% stake in the company and has pledged to create a strategic partnership.
"Mantis is a pioneer in customized one-of-a-kind travel services in some of the most imaginative hotels across the world,” said Sebastien Bazin, Chairman and CEO, AccorHotels.
“With this strategic partnership, we are reinforcing the Group's footprint in Africa and we have access to a brand with strong roots and heritage, recognised for its commitment to preserve the environment and its prestigious credentials in the hospitality space."
Founder and Chairman of the Mantis Group, Adrian Gardiner, added: "AccorHotels is one of the fastest growing hotel and travel operators worldwide
"This agreement presents an attractive proposition for the Mantis Group to utilize AccorHotels' robust distribution channels and world-wide reach to further develop the hospitality concepts and sustainability projects we have worked so tirelessly to grow. We are excited to embark upon this new chapter alongside AccorHotels where we will act as ambassadors for the development of both our Groups' portfolios and offerings."
The French multinational hotel group currently operates more than 200 hotels in the Middle East and Africa.
AccorHotels said that it intends to open a further 100 properties in the next five years as it tries to capitalise on the continent’s growing travel market.
The firm has also shifted its focus towards the luxury hotel market segment, acquiring Raffles, Fairmont and Swissôtel, in 2016.
Recruitment survey shows struggle to fill hospitality jobs
Hospitality and food businesses are hiring and wages are rising, but employers are facing the biggest deterioration in the availability of candidates to fill new roles in the sector, for more than two decades.
A monthly report from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) said the reopening of the economy has led to an increase in hiring in the hospitality and food sectors but the high demand for workers is not being met.
A return to normal requires more workers
The steady return to more normal business operations has led to greater demand for staff . As businesses move back into their offices, or begin hybrid working between home and the workplace, there is a need to be filled for tea breaks, caffeine fixes and working lunches. The hospitality and food sectors and trying to fill the vacancies:
- Permanent staff appointments expanded at the quickest rate since 1997
- Temp billings growth hit the highest for nearly 23 years
- Permanent appointments growth hit a series record
At the same time, vacancy growth hit a new series record.
The availability of workers declined at an unprecedented rate, driven by faster falls in the supply of both temporary and permanent staff.
As a result, rates of starting pay rose rapidly at the end of the second quarter.
Improved business confidence leading recovery
The report is compiled by IHS Markit, from responses to questionnaires sent to a panel of around 400 UK recruitment and employment consultancies.
“Recruiters are working flat out to fill roles across our economy”, said Neil Carberry, Chief Executive of the REC. “The jobs market is improving at the fastest pace we have ever seen, but it is still an unpredictable time. We can’t yet tell how much the ending of furlough and greater candidate confidence will help to meet this rising demand for staff. In some key shortage sectors like hospitality and food, more support is likely to be needed to avoid slowing the recovery. That means supporting transitions into growing sectors through unemployment support and new skills programmes, as well as making sure the new immigration system reacts to demand.”
“June’s data confirms that momentum in the jobs market continues to surge, with improved business confidence leading to record high recruitment activity”, said Claire Warnes, Partner and Head of Education, Skills and Productivity at KPMG UK. “As we move towards the final easing of pandemic restrictions, permanent role availability increased at the quickest rate since the survey began in 1997 and temporary roles rose to the greatest extent for 23-and-a-half years. But for the fourth month running we’re seeing a decline in the availability of candidates to fill all these new roles and the most severe deterioration for 24 years. We need action from businesses and government to reskill and upskill furloughed and prospective workers now more than ever, as the increasing skills gap in the workforce has the potential to slow the UK’s economic recovery.”