Indian hotel group OYO sets sights on Egypt for next overseas expansion

Hospitality major keen to enter Egypt with its ‘sanitised stay’ drive to take advantage of the new marketplace post-coronavirus

OYO is currently present in four countries in the GCC region – the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Bahrain.

India-based OYO Hotels and Homes is understood to be finalising plans for a foray into the Egyptian market and is in talks with some of the local players to forge partnerships in the country.

The proposed move to enter the Egyptian market is part of the global hospitality chain major’s ambitious expansion plans in the Middle East and North Africa region, following debuts in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, sources told Arabian Business.

When contacted, Manu Midha, head of Middle East operations of OYO, told Arabian Business: “Given the strategic potential of the region, we are constantly on the lookout for strategically relevant opportunities to expand our footprint in the Middle East, including Egypt.

“However, there is nothing specific for us to comment on at this point.”

Indian hotel group OYO in talks with UAE, Saudi partners to review agreements

Company says re-thinking ‘every aspect’ of business in light of Covid-19 impact on global tourism

According to the sources, OYO is keen to enter Egypt with its ‘sanitised stay’ drive to take advantage of the new marketplace, at a time when the hospitality sector is returning to business after a long pandemic-induced freeze.

OYO Hotels and Homes last month beefed up its leadership team for the Middle East region by moving its Thailand operations head, Guruprasad Shankaranarayanan, to the new role of chief operating officer (COO) for its Middle East and Southeast Asia region.

The reinforcement of the leadership team is said to be a precursor to OYO’s aggressive expansion plans in the region, which is identified as among the strategic growth markets for the Delhi-headquartered hospitality chain.

OYO is currently present in four countries in the GCC region – the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Bahrain.

Sources said the company is working on a twin-strategy of entering new geographies and diversifying its product portfolio to advance its position as a clear market leader in the Middle East region.

“The Middle East remains a strategic market for OYO. We work with over 200 partners and are present in over 30 cities in the region.

We are doing very well in Saudi Arabia with supply growing and occupancy coming back, with about 15 percent of our properties already at pre-Covid levels,” Midha said.

To address the post-pandemic safety concerns of customers, OYO – like many other hospitality players – has launched a program which certifies the sanitisation levels at its various properties.

Midha said about 40 percent of OYO properties in the UAE and Saudi Arabia are currently tagged as ‘sanitised stays’.

“Properties tagged as ‘sanitised stays’ are seeing a two times higher revenue per available room compared to other properties,” he revealed.

Globally, OYO is present in more than 80 countries.

Arabian Business: why we're going behind a paywall

Source: Read Full Article