At the helm of Ishraq Hospitality, Richard Haddad is focused on driving the company’s growth with its vast hotel portfolio and regional expansion as well as tackling the sustainability predicament. We sat with the CEO to learn more about his plans for the company.
What motivates you in your professional life?
Several factors drive me to excel in my work. Setting clear and precise goals and dedicating my full focus to achieving them is my priority. Having a clear direction allows me to channel my efforts effectively and measure my progress along the way. In addition to, delivering exceptional results by working with a fully dedicated team. Seeing tangible outcomes and exceeding expectations enables me to continually strive for excellence.
By playing a role in the growth and development of Ishraq Hospitality, I feel a huge sense of accomplishment and satisfaction across the organization. Another important aspect that drives me is the opportunity to develop talents and witness their success stories and empower and support others in their personal growth.
Lastly, championing a dynamic and responsible travel ecosystem is a significant source of motivation for me and the organization. To make a positive impact in the industry and to promote sustainable practices, is something that drives me to work towards creating a more environmentally friendly and socially responsible future.
What have been some of your company’s recent milestones/highlights?
It thrills me to share that this year has been marked by significant milestones and highlights for Ishraq Hospitality. Despite some of the challenges posed by the ever-changing industry dynamics, our portfolio has achieved and gained incredible double-digit growth, exceeding last year’s results. This growth is a testament to the dedication and hard work of our team in continuing to deliver exceptional experience to our guests while maintaining a strong market presence.
Furthermore, we have successfully expanded our market share in key regions, capitalizing on emerging opportunities and strategic partnerships. These milestones have solidified our position as a leading player in the industry.
How are you tackling the issue of sustainability?
At Ishraq Hospitality, we approach sustainability with exceptional engagement and a strong commitment to predefined goals for 2023. We believe that achieving these targets requires collaboration among all stakeholders, including our shareholders, suppliers, employees, guests and the local community. To guide our efforts, we have established an ESG committee that has set ambitious sustainability goals for the year ahead. These goals include a 50 percent reduction in paper usage, a 60 percent reduction in single-use plastics, a 2 percent reduction in food waste compared to 2022, a 1.5 percent reduction in cardon dioxide emissions compared to 2022 and a collective volunteering commitment of 19,000 hours. Furthermore, we have pledged to plant 5,000 trees by the end of 2023, contributing to reforestation efforts and carbon offsetting.
Implementing sustainable business practices is a top priority for us. We believe it is not only essential for preserving the environment but also aligns with consumer demands and helps drive our bottom line. By integrating sustainable strategies throughout our operations and supply chain, we aim to meet consumer expectations while increasing profitability and positively impacting our planet.
Do you have any new projects in the pipeline?
We have several exciting projects in the pipeline. Our initial focus is on repositioning our current portfolio through property improvement plans. By enhancing and upgrading our existing hotels, we aim to ensure that they become top-performing properties in their respective markets.
Simultaneously, we are expanding our management operations by adding hotels across the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia. We have already made significant progress in this area, with numerous leads and active negotiations. Our target is to sign 15 new hotels by 2026.