Radisson Blu leads Lagos hotel boom
»With the opening of at least one hotel every other month, the influx of international hotel brands, and high employment capacity, the hospitality sector is a thriving sub-sector in the travel and tourism industry in igeria. Lagos is consolidating its reputation as both a tourism and a business destination with the emergence of new hotels offering quality and value for money, ranging from threeto five-star ratings, including the recently renovated Federal Palace Hotel, owned by the Ibru family and under the management of the Southern Sun group.
ne of the latest additions is the Radisson Blu Anchorage Hotel on the lagoon waterfront of Victoria Island, Lagos’s business district. Designed by a Swede, Christian Lundwal, and managed by a Norwegian, John Grieg (above), the hotel has a true Scandinavian feel – it’s slick and modern; but that’s mixed with warm African hospitality, geared towards business travellers, with conference and meeting facilities, and four restaurants.
John Grieg is a hospitality industry veteran from Norway, who has more than 40 years of international experience in the hospitality industry. He joined the Rezidor Group in 1996, the group owner of the global Radisson brand, one of the fastest-growing hotel companies worldwide.
he industry has the potential of becoming an important foreign earner for the booming city of Lagos and for the whole country. For Lagos is to achieve its ambitions of becoming the regional hub and Africa’s financial and economic centre, it will need more world-class hotels such as the Radisson and premium restaurants to line its shores.
Nigeria’s GDP rose fivefold from $46bn in 2000 to $247bn in 2011, according to IMF estimates, while its population increased from 119m to 160m
Africa holds 89% of the world’s platinum, 74% of its chrome, 60% of its diamonds, and 12% of its oil reserves
Africa vs the World GDP% Growth 2010–2015 Apart from China and India, nearly all the world's fastest-growing economies are in Africa, according to the IMF's WorldEconomic Outlook2011
C h i n a
E t h i o p i a
I n d i a
U g n a d a
G h a n a
K e n y a
URBANISATION Africans move to the cities Urbanisation in Africa is growing at a faster rate than anywhere else in the world, helping fuel a consumer boom. Of the continent’s 1bn population, 40% now live in urban areas. A total of 49 African cities had more than 1m inhabitants in 2010, as many as Europe and many more than Brazil and India, which had 21 and 48 respectively. By 2030, the combined spending power of the top 18 African cities is expected to top $1.3 trillion. “There is a massive transformation under way and it can be expected to become one of the biggest driving forces for modernisation, economic growth and prosperity in Africa,” says Paul Freer of Alquity investment management company, the authors of the report, Case for Africa.
MEDIA Dakar radio wins journalism innovation awards A Dakar-based network of radio stations serving 13 countries in West Africa has received a 2011 KnightBatten Award for Innovations in Journalism.
The West Africa Democracy Radio (WADR), a trans-territorial, sub-regional broadcaster based in Dakar, designed a publishing system that works for operations without resources.
WADR sha red t he awa rd w i t h i t s pa r tner, Sourcefabric, a Czech NGO, that designed and built the radio’s website – the prizewinner – which integrates several open source tools to publish reports in French and English online, on air and on social media, tripling its audience by providing the radio’s content on multiple outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and SoundCloud for deeper reach into the social media. The radio’s network comprises nearly 40 partner radios in eight West African countries and correspondents in 10 countries. WADR broadcasts in French and English on FM in Dakar, via satellite on Astra 4A to sub-Saharan Africa and streaming on its website www.wadr.org.
FOREX Lusaka bank first in Africa to trade in yuan Zambia’s capital Lusaka has become the first African city to offer Chinese currency banking services.
The city’s Bank of China branch now handles counter deposits and withdrawals in yuan (renmin-
bi). It is expected that Chinese businesses operating in Zambia will start using the currency amongst themselves to reduce the amount of commission paid when changing from the Zambian kwacha via the US dollar. The service is aimed at Chinese investors working in Zambia, but also Zambians importing goods from China. In the last 10 years Sino-Zambian trade has taken off, growing from just $100m in 2000 to $2.8bn last year.
African Business | November 2011