ENSURING GROWTH BEYOND OUR SHORES
Operate 20 hotels by 2020. This is the ambition stated by LUX* Resorts & Hotels. On Friday 22 September, Paul Jones, CEO of the hospitality group, presented the financial statement for fiscal year 2016-2017 and the group’s future prospects to financial analysts and the media. Arnaud Lagesse, Chairman of the Board, also attended the event, held at the Labourdonnais Waterfront Hotel, where guests were given more insight on destinations targeted by the group over the coming three years and current projects.
While the tourism market is consolidating itself in Mauritius, LUX* group’s vision goes well beyond our shores. The company aims, with its Vision 2020 strategy, to shine brighter in the Indian Ocean, but also in other parts of the world. The Board of Directors highlights the ambitious two-fold strategy of the brand: “The core is the Indian Ocean, where we want to strengthen our assets by renovating our hotels which have a stronger return while maintaining high standards. We shall also identify new possibilities of management contracts. Simultaneously, LUX* will pursue its international expansion beyond the Indian Ocean. The objective is to grow the number of management contracts exponentially in regions such as South-East Asia, Africa, Europe, China and the Middle East. With a turnover and profits on the rise, the group is in a sound financial health.
Team members deserve the credit for their excellent work in that respect. With the three-year strategy, which has all the support of the Board of Directors, our goal is to strengthen our footing as the most dynamic hospitality group in the region and make our brand shine on the international scene,” says Arnaud Lagesse, Chairman of the Board of LUX* Resorts & Hotels.
LUX* plans to reinforce its current portfolio with the opening of new hotels, namely LUX* North Male Atoll in the Maldives and LUX* Organic Escapes in Chengdu, China, in 2018, as well as LUX* Al Zorah in the United Arab Emirates in 2019. Others will follow, including LUX* Tuscany in Italy, LUX* Dianshan Lake in Suzhou, China, LUX* Luxelakes in Chengdu, China, LUX* Wolong, also in China, as well as Phu Quoc in Vietnam. Moreover, Café LUX* has grown from five outlets in 2011 to 11 in 2017 across the world, from the Indian Ocean to China through Turkey.
Technology at the heart of hospitality
Paul Jones also introduced the app developed by the group on Friday during the analyst meeting. “It is a real game changer. The mobile phone is today part of everyone’s daily life. It was thus essential for us to innovate with an application that not only allows our customers to access their room once at the hotel, but also make a booking for activities or meals even before reaching the destination. Booked activities are automatically synchronised with their calendar app. They can also customise their stay at will. We went even further with this app, which allows us to get in touch directly with these customers to offer tailor-made propositions, even after their stay in our hotels,” explains the CEO.
During the analyst meeting, LUX* has also launched its new investor relations platform, whose aim is to help them receive financial data and other important releases in real time. The market is rapidly evolving and the group ensures that all its partners receive essential information at the earliest. This platform is merged with the website of LUX* and shares most recent information regarding financial statements, share price and trends as well as corporate governance.
LUX* reinvents luxury hospitality
With the reopening of LUX* Grand Gaube scheduled for next December, the group reinvents luxury hospitality with an innovative approach to elegance and the legendary Mauritian sense of hospitality. Guests now have five more reasons to choose this hotel: LUX* App, Bento Box, Veggie Heaven, Paddle Tennis and G&T 100 Bar.
“In the coming weeks, LUX* will also unveil a simple yet innovative loyalty programme. It is an automatic reward system through which a free stay is offered to any customer who makes a direct booking for a minimum of eight nights. Moreover, LUX* offers a state-of-the-art online concierge service. The group’s website also allows clients to book a flight to any destination across the world, with hotel reservation as well as extras such as transfers and other services,” adds the CEO.
Guests of LUX* can thus customise their stay before arrival, from the booking of a baby-sitting service to the supply of the minibar and organising a private breakfast on the beach. They also have the choice of numerous activities, including a yoga session at dawn and swimming with dolphins and whale sharks. The group’s website also allows them to order flowers or book a session at the spa, a table at the restaurant, a tee-off or even make special requests for birthdays and honeymoons.
The group’s turnover this year was MUR5.44 billion, an increase of 5% over the previous year. Profits show the same trend, with an increase of 23% to MUR515 million compared to the previous year, where profits were MUR419 million. Thus, the earning per share has gone up from MUR1.15 in 2016 to MUR1.25 in 2017. This laudable performance is partly attributable to the sale of the Tamassa Hotel to the Grit group, though LUX* has had to compensate a shortfall of MUR165 million caused by the closure, for renovation purposes, of LUX* South Ari Atoll in the Maldives and LUX* Grand Gaube. The group was also able to reduce its debt, from MUR4.5 billion in 2016 to MUR3.8 billion as at June 30, 2017.