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THR Tourism Industry Advisors CEO Christophe de Bruyn’s Reflections on His Participation in the International Hospitality Investment Forum

International Hospitality Investment ForumLast week, our CEO Christophe de Bruyn attended the International Hospitality Investment Forum (IHIF) in Berlin, which gathered more than 1,200 senior leaders from the global hotel community to discuss updates and trends impacting the hotel industry.

After three days of intense discussions about how the industry should best address both the challenges and the opportunities that have arisen from the Covid pandemic, our CEO is confident about the future ahead for industry players.

“There is plenty of money to invest in opportunistic deals considering Covid-driven situations. However, there is a stock of rooms that still need to pop up from pre-Covid times and that might affect some investment decisions in adding new keys.”

As De Bruyn notes, reestablishing pre-Covid demand levels will guide industry recovery and investment decisions taken in the months to come. However, demand recovery is currently uneven across geographies, due to the dependence of many regions on a still-inaccessible international market. De Bruyn highlights the insight from KLM´s CEO, Pieter Elbers, who stated that the company has already reopened routes to 95% of their destinations, though not with the same volume of flights.

“Air accessibility is coming slowly back to support those tourism destinations that depend a lot - or totally- on airplanes.”

THR’s CEO noted other relevant topics addressed at the conference such as lasting customer behavioral changes brought on by Covid, and an enhanced call to action from the tourism industry regarding sustainability.

In a nod to the continued challenges facing the MICE sector of our industry, De Bruyn noted the positive effect being at an in-person event after so many months meeting digitally:

“The in-person attendance definitely brings more value than the online one, not so much for general sessions, but for round tables, person-to-person meetings and networking in general.”

There is still a long road towards full industry recovery, and THR is looking forward to continued partnership with our clients on the challenging decisions ahead.

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