Lion Roars Hotels and Lodges has remained under the radar in the highly competitive arena of the hotel management industry for two decades, almost unnoticed yet always present. With early beginnings as a family-owned and -managed Hospitality Company, the group has expanded and now manages 24 hotels and lodges across Southern Africa, with 5 new build projects in the pipeline.
Evolving from a family-owned and run business to a serious corporate industry player presents many challenges. That’s according to Kevin Bailey, co-founder and CEO of Lion Roars. “Keeping the family-style culture is paramount and has been a key factor in our success,” says Kevin. “Our biggest challenges in our journey have come not from managing our growth, but rather from managing systems to support that growth in the most effective manner. We have been forced to overcome many hurdles; the biggest of those challenges have been in the field of technology.”
Expansion from a two-man team managing small boutique properties to a management team spread across three head office hubs, managing a 24 property portfolio, has required a new set of management tools. Systems and processes have been audited and updated according to the progression and the business has had to seek the best affordable local systems to support that growth. Revenue Director Raymond Goncalves comments that keeping ahead of trends while still offering quality service has demanded a system revamp. The entire group has moved to the Ankerdata’s protel™ multi-property system solution. According to Goncalves, the multi-faceted protel dashboard has streamlined their business and proved invaluable in their revenue management.
The company has also recently adopted automated guest review systems and taken on a channel management service provider to manage their growing room inventory. In keeping with hotel management group trends, the company is also looking into adopting a loyalty programme and implementing guest rewards.
Operations Director Baden Swans notes that latest technological offerings have become a ‘must have’ not only in effective profitable management but more importantly to ensure a competitive edge.