TDF, Ennismore sign MoU to explore $400 million investment fund

October 28, 2021

RIYADH — The Tourism Development Fund (TDF) and Ennismore Wednesday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the 5th Future Investment Initiative (FII) in Riyadh to explore the establishment of a $400 million (SR1.5 billion) fund that would bring Ennismore’s lifestyle brands to at least 12 destinations in Saudi Arabia.

Under the MoU, TDF would identify locations and provide financing options for projects throughout the Kingdom, while Ennismore would lead on programming, design and operations of the destinations, under its lifestyle brands. Created in 2021, Ennismore is a joint venture between Sharan Pasricha, founder & Co-CEO, and Accor, creating the world’s largest and fastest-growing lifestyle company, including 87 operating properties globally, with an additional 141 hotels in the pipeline.

The Ennismore brands are: 21c Museum Hotel, 25hours, Delano, Gleneagles, Hyde, JO&JOE, Mama Shelter, Mondrian, Morgans Originals, SLS, SO/, The Hoxton, TRIBE and Working From_.

The development of lifestyle destinations — an undersupplied segment of the Saudi tourism industry — would align with the National Tourism Strategy’s 10 key destinations, including Riyadh, Jeddah, Eastern Province, Asir, AlUla, Taif, Madinah, Al-Baha, Hail and Al-Jouf, delivering around 2,000 keys.

TDF would continue to provide new opportunities for private sector investors in the Saudi tourism space, while aligning with wider sustainable tourism efforts throughout the Kingdom, prioritizing the protection of nature and supporting local communities. Both TDF and Ennismore are committed to employing, training, and developing Saudi talent, creating up to 3,000 jobs.

Increasing the presence of lifestyle hospitality brands is at the heart of the Kingdom’s strategy for welcoming brands that take an active role in driving community and build deep connections with guests through shared values, unique design, and authentic restaurant destinations, both for international visitors and locals.

During a ceremony attended by Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al Khateeb, chairman of TDF, Sébastien Bazin, chairman and CEO of Accor, and Qusai Al-Fakhri, CEO of TDF, signed the MoU in the presence of Sharan Pasricha and Gaurav Bhushan, co-CEOs of Ennismore.

Al-Fakhri said: “This MoU marks an important milestone for TDF as we continue to enable private sector investors to benefit from the massive opportunities offered by Saudi’s growing tourism sector.

“The fund would channel private sector investments to various areas of the Kingdom, enriching the visitor experience and enhancing the value of strategic projects through globally renowned hospitality brands. These new lifestyle destinations would create unique experiences for visitors and residents to enjoy, providing them with exciting entertainment and F&B offerings, as well as co-working spaces. They would also focus on ensuring the social, environmental, and economic sustainability of the areas they are located in.”

Bhushan and Pasricha added: “Saudi Arabia is a key growth market for Ennismore and we’re delighted that this partnership with TDF cements our commitment to the Kingdom’s tourism sector.

“By expanding our presence across Saudi Arabia, we’re proud to be supporting the creation of investment opportunities and jobs that will help enrich the tourism experience. We look forward to bringing our brands with their unique design and authentic experiences to the Kingdom.”

TDF was established in June 2020 with a capital of $ billion to drive tourism growth in Saudi Arabia. The Fund works to unify the efforts of the tourism sector and its partners including lenders, operators, and service providers, to enhance the investment experience and facilitate private sector access to opportunities in various regions of the Kingdom that are distinguished by their natural, geographical, and cultural offering. — SPA

October 28, 2021
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