Power List 2017, Vimal Singh, MD, South Asia, Golden Tulip Hotels and Resorts and Louvre Hotels Group
When Louvre Hotels Group (LHG) picked up a majority stake in Sarovar Hotels and Resorts, questions were raised whether its change management would be on the lines of how it had occurred with the Golden Tulip brand. After all, since 2007, LHG had been managing hotels in India under the latter umbrella brand. However, Vimal Singh maintained that each brand’s integration is different. Currently, both brands work independently and look after their respective market segments, and there have been no changes in the operational setup of the individual brands.
Coming to Golden Tulip specifically, a key initiative that Singh undertook in 2016-2017 was expanding the brand’s footprint in South Asia. “Additionally, we have been focussing on leasing out properties and looking after management and operations. We are also strengthening our revenue and sales model in the region to make it more productive,” he said.
The different GST slabs introduced for hospitality businesses has affected the luxury segment and he claimed that the industry awaited some much-needed clarity. “The state guideline on ‘voluntary service charge’ is another big challenge, while the liquor banning too affected business badly. The rules and regulations for procuring different licences for new hotels are other perennial challenges,” he rued.
Currently, Golden Tulip is present in 19 cities in India, where it owns 24 hotels under the three brands, Golden Tulip Hotels and Resorts, Royal Tulip and Tulip Inn. It also has around 10 hotels with approximately 500 keys in the pipeline. Singh is focusing on driving an aggressive marketing campaign to tap the wedding business.
By Vinita Bhatia