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Dubai, UAE, United Arab Emirates, 2006/08/29 - Burger adds that The King Shaka airport soon to be completed between Zimbali and Durban, should enhance prospects and may spur IFA SA to seek further opportunities in that area..
In its maiden annual results following a listing on the JSE in February, IFA Hotels & Resorts Limited (IFA SA) has outperformed expectations and achieved significant growth. Revenue for the year to June 2006 was up by 57 per cent to US$ 22.7 million and earnings before interest and tax (“EBIT”) by 138 per cent to US$ 7.84 million. Profit after tax leapt 209 per cent to US$ 5.92 million. Marking its national expansion outside of KwaZulu-Natal, the group purchased a stake for approximately US$ 10 million in the Cape Boschendal estate shortly before year-end.
IFA SA owns the exclusive Zimbali Lodge on KwaZulu-Natal’s north coast, rated by Condé Nast as one of the world’s top hotels, and a 50 percent stake in the joint venture with Moreland developing the multi-million dollar Zimbali Coastal Resort. In addition it owns a recently-acquired 19.25 per cent stake in Boschendal Limited.
Talal Jassim Al-Bahar, Chairman and Managing Director of IFA Hotels & Resorts (IFA HR), says, “We are pleased with these positive results in our first year as a publicly listed company and we forecast encouraging results in the future as we expand further into the African sub continent.”
The take-up of the Zimbali Coastal Resort has prompted a 3 million square meter expansion called Zimbali Lakes. In addition the joint venture recently acquired 2.54 million square meters of land on the south bank of the Tongaat River, opposite Zimbali Lakes. “The joint venture will leverage the Zimbali brand to successfully develop the south bank residential estate including a retirement village,” says Al-Bahar.
Werner Burger, President and COO of IFA HR, says that IFA HR Kuwait, which maintains an 85 per cent majority interest in IFA SA, is well-positioned to invest further in resort development in the country. “The recent Boschendal investment affirms the commitment to foreign direct investment and is the precursor to wider investment in Africa.”
Burger adds that The King Shaka airport soon to be completed between Zimbali and Durban, should enhance prospects and may spur IFA SA to seek further opportunities in that area.
Al-Bahar concluded, “The strong performance of our assets has laid a solid foundation for growth. We expect this to be boosted by South Africa’s increasing popularity as a tourist destination and a hunting ground for international property investors.”