African Hospitality Specialists
Writer: Emily Jarvis
Project Manager: Stuart Parker
Demonstrating its total service solution approach to development and construction opportunities throughout Africa over the past 20 years, South Africa-based ZPC Group is currently capitalising on lucrative opportunities in West Africa’s hospitality industry; delivering its top quality products on time, on budget and always aiming to exceed client expectations.
“Our move into West Africa has been beneficial for existing clients operating in the region, while opening up doors to engage with new clients,” says Ben Pretorius, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ZPC Group.
“There is definitely tremendous growth happening in this region, which bodes well for us in the future and will form a welcome addition to our project portfolio on the continent.”
ZPC Group is comprised of numerous consultancies, technical and design companies, capable of fulfilling various construction disciplines, all of which combine together to create a turnkey contractor offering – from project execution to final handover and maintenance services – for clients who look to benefit from a single point of contact on any given project. “Our key focus is to ensure that we cover all areas and disciplines of the properties we refurbish and construct. The value-add offering is proving the preferred choice among our clients and enables us to create an individually-tailored solution,” the CEO details.
This business model has resulted in ZPC’s involvement in projects such as the Hôtel 2 Février Radisson Blu Lomé, Beacon Island Resort Hotel in Togo; Sun City The Cabanas Hotel, Sun City Vacation Club and Sun City The Palace Of The Lost City for Sun International South Africa; The Radisson Blu Okoume Palace Five-Star Hotel Libreville and The Park Inn by Radisson Libreville in Gabon; and Dihlabeng Mall, Bethlehem, South Africa. All of these projects were completed in partnership with some of the world’s most reputable names in the hospitality industry.
Building client relationships
After decades of experience working across the hospitality and retail sectors, ZPC identified a potential gap in the market for hotel refurbishments; with many clients approaching the Company looking for ways to do undertake renovation projects with the help of ZPC. “Clients wanted to upgrade their existing hotels, resorts and other hospitality properties quickly, efficiently and to a high standard for a good price.
“This market niche served as a crucial differentiator in the increasingly saturated construction industry, generating an additional revenue stream,” Pretorius highlights.
Not limiting itself to any one area of expertise, ZPC has also recently engaged with developers for the delivery of healthcare, office space and mixed-use projects.
He adds: “We bring the unique characteristics of the ZPC brand to each of our projects, and we will continue to live by our values to do what we do best. Our status as a preferred contractor in many African countries is a result of our willing involvement of the client at every stage of a project coupled with our vibrant team of fully-trained professionals. This approach has helped to grow ZPC’s presence into new African markets.”
Staff development represents an ongoing internal investment for ZPC, who understand the importance of having a team of highly motivated and committed staff across the Group.
“ZPC attract the best of the best. Our culture and DNA cultivates a sense of worth and appreciation among our staff, and we believe this has allowed us to retain the skills that the Group has today,” explains Pretorius.
A large component of its compulsory training is centred around health & safety, as well as building an understanding of ZPC’s core values. With many opportunities for individual career progression, the Company is proud to have achieved a workforce that is 75 percent local, providing the necessary upskilling of South Africans under the B-BEEE initiative.
Currently in contact with developers in East Africa to pursue opportunities on a case-by-case basis – in addition to its already solid pipeline in West and Southern Africa – ZPC is displaying its limitless capacity when it comes to large-scale hospitality projects.
Pretorius highlights some noteworthy projects: “At present, we are engaged with the refurbishment of two Radisson Blu hotels; namely an impressive 320-room, 50,000 square metre ‘upper upscale’ hotel called Lomé in Togo, and another named Libreville in Gabon. We are also refurbishing the Entertainment Centre in Sun City Holiday Club and have a number of existing projects due for completion this year,” says Pretorius.
Completing the prestigious Lomé refurbishment within 12 months has been an exciting challenge for ZPC; one that requires a strong native partner who has knowledge of Togo’s property regulations.
“The Lomé refurbishment project would not be a success without the continued support and commitment of our client, the Kalyan Group, under the leadership of Ashok Gupta. Kalyan Group’s relationship with major stakeholders in Togo has been instrumental in the successful execution of this project, and we will continue to investigate profitable opportunities together in West Africa on the exciting road that lies ahead,” he adds.
Kalyan Group represents just one of ZPC’s numerous strategic partnerships, designed to generate long-term mutual success of Carlson Rezidor’s business plan. “We promote our business partners within ZPC and its divisions, as their efficiency and success ultimately become part of our efficiency and success,” emphasises Pretorius.
Going forward, ZPC will continue to reinforce its turnkey offering in order to better engage with hotel owners who look for a developer who can work to a tight budget and timeline; while also aligning with the wider brand guidelines and standards in accordance with each client’s requirements.
The CEO concludes: “We want to be seen as a Group that can add value to any client’s business plan in order to become the preferred contractor for projects throughout Africa. Leveraging the skills and expertise within the Group, we are able to learn from our partners, take stock and find new ways to improve our service offering to encourage repeat business.
“Harnessing our ‘ZPC DNA’, positive attitude to work, technical knowhow and professional services offering, we aim to expand our footprint and influence to all corners of the African continent.”
“Together with the Association for Persons with Disabilities (APD), the ZPC Group strives to make a lasting difference in the lives of persons living with disabilities. We have uplifted all communities surrounding and those involved in our projects. Through our skills transfer, training and mentorship strategies, we leave a lasting legacy in the people that we take on, and the greater community,” Pretorius notes.