What does your company do?
Singer Group operates various businesses within the tourism industry, so our business is the movement and meeting of people, for leisure and business. What started as a single travel agency has, over the past almost sixty years, has grown exponentially to include a variety of businesses in our portfolio – spanning across the travel, hospitality, hotel and property sectors in South Africa. Our brands include some much-loved names like Montagu Springs, Dolphin Beach Hotel in Blouberg, Blowfish Restaurant, Embassy Travel and Amazing Holidays.
What is your biggest success?
If you had posed this question pre-Covid, my answer would have been very different to what it is today. It may have been our group's exponential growth - starting with one single brand, years ago, to the eleven brands we manage today. It may also have been how we went from managing hotels to building our own hotels. Or perhaps celebrating the many prestigious accounts whose travel we manage. Perhaps it would have been when I was invited to speak at an international travel tech conference in Tel Aviv, or when I won the Positive Role Model - Western Cape in this year's Gender Mainstreaming Awards. But today, in the eye of the Covid-storm, my answer to the question "what has been your biggest success" is that we have not retrenched a single employee. This despite the fact that our beloved tourism industry is one of the hardest hit and that we still cannot reopen the majority of our businesses. Saving these jobs, and helping them look after their loved ones, is therefore my greatest success. Oh yes, and my three babies!
What has been your biggest hurdle?
The biggest hurdle in our business (and the entire industry) is access to affordable finance and support from financial industries and Government - especially in tough times, like post-World Cup, the recent drought and now Lockdown.