The membership profile of the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (“TBCSA”) now includes an international hotel brand, one of the country’s top tourist attractions, a new association and one of Southern Africa’s largest tour operating companies.
TBCSA chief executive officer, Mmatšatši Ramawela, confirmed the new additions: “We have the pleasure of welcoming back Tourvest Holdings to the TBCSA family, as well as our new members, the V&A Waterfront, Urban-Econ Tourism, the Preferred Hotel Group, and the Association of African Exhibition Organisers (AAXO). “This is a proud and significant moment for the TBCSA in our objective of encouraging organised business and unifying the entire travel and tourism industry in South Africa to speak with one voice.”
In response to being officially included to the TBCSA membership, David Green, chief executive officer of the V&A Waterfront, says that the addition of one of the most visited tourism attraction on the continent into the TBCSA signals both parties’ commitment to an all-inclusive approach in growing tourism numbers into South Africa. “The V&A Waterfront is honoured to become a member of the TBCSA. Tourism is an important driver of our economy, and one that requires a holistic, sustainable vision for development, protection of historical assets and an inclusive approach that is as welcoming of locals as it is of international visitors. These key strengths have enabled the Waterfront to become the most visited destination on the African continent.”
In adding her response, Dr Kiera Schoeman, tourism planning and research specialist at Urban-Econ Tourism, says by being members of the TBCSA, Urban-Econ Tourism can contribute significantly to creating an enabling environment for the growth of the travel and tourism industry. “Being associated with TBCSA enables us to achieve our vision of ‘Tourism without Boundaries’ by developing tourism on all fronts, through strengthening the strategic and collaborative environment surrounding the tourism sector.”
Although TBCSA membership is not new to Tourvest Holdings, Blacky Komani, chief executive officer of Ground Duty Free at Tourvest Holdings, says after its re-instatement into the TBCSA fraternity, Tourvest is looking forward to contributing to the sustained strength of a unified industry voice. “It’s good to be back after few years of not participating in TBCSA. As a major player in the tourism industry, Tourvest is looking forward to ensuring that the voice of the industry remains strong.”
Meanwhile, Caroline Daniel, regional director – Africa – of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, says that the hotel group is looking forward to contributing to the TBCSA and in the process, generating the tangible benefits of Council affiliation. “We are extremely pleased to be accepted as a TBCSA member and look forward to gaining from the benefits of our membership in the future.”
In her role as chairperson of AAXO, Carol Weaving says that the association is excited to partner with the TBCSA, which through the years has built a reputation for being the voice for tourism in South Africa. “We are excited to partner with the TBCSA – a trusted and respected voice of the travel and tourism industry. With the exhibitions industry being a significant contributor to the tourism sector, a partnership between AAXO and TBCSA seems only logical. Together we can provide our respective members access to support, insight and tools to help formalise, standardise and grow the industries.”
The Council looks forward to cementing strong relationships with each new member organisation and is confident that each addition to the TBCSA umbrella will contribute significantly to the vision of being the trusted and informed voice of business in travel and tourism industry.