EasyHotel plans African expansion

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The Independent Travel

Budget hotel chain easyHotel has announced an ambitious expansion plan targeting the African continent.

The company, which currently offers cut-price hotels in Europe and the United Arab Emirates, says that it will open its first property in Africa next year, complete with its trademark orange branding.

By 2016, a further 50 will be opened across the continent, easyHotel said this week, far outstripping the 15 currently operating in European cities.

EasyHotel boss Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou said that economic development, foreign visitors, urbanization and growing disposable income of the African market meant there was a 'clear demand' for his product.

Hotel chains are beginning to take notice of Africa's future potential, although the regional tourism industry still is characterized by a gulf between the continent's rapidly-growing stable, progressive democracies and the desolation of those which lack basic infrastructure or are still war torn or poverty-stricken.

Earlier this year, Marriott announced plans to open 40 properties across Africa and the Middle East within the next six years, targeting Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Libya, Morocco, and Rwanda among others, while its rival Hilton has 13 properties currently under development on the continent.