General Manager Russel Storey explained the reason for the 30% staff reduction, saying demand for the hotel’s services is not expected to be quite as high as it was in pre-pandemic times.
“We had around 300 employees before we closed two years ago and we deployed just over 210 when we resume operations today. We don’t see demand as high as it did when the hotel closed and are just a little cautious. I just had to bring in a few people who knew the business.” he told Business Daily.
The global hotel chain closed its Kenya branch at a time when a survey by the Central Bank of Kenya showed dwindling occupancy rates for hotel rooms across the East African country.
Business Insider Africa posits that Radisson Blu’s Kenya office generates most of its income from renting out venues for conferences and parties. No wonder the company decided to temporarily suspend full-capacity operations in the midst of the pandemic.
Recall that Kenya, like most African countries, had closed its land and sea borders between 2020 and 2021. The restrictive travel measure aimed at curbing the spread of the virus had inevitably affected Kenya’s tourism sector. In turn, hotel brands like Radisson Blu lost millions in revenue.
Recent findings from Business Insider Africa show that the east African country was missing from the list of the 7 African countries that recorded the most international tourist arrivals as of 2021. And that’s bad news, as tourism plays an essential role in the hospitality industry.
But the recovery is currently underway. And by the time it gets back to full operating capacity, Radisson Blu is expected to likely reinstate some of its redundant employees.