ENTREPRENEURSHIP – ANJU HAWOLDAR Comments Off on ENTREPRENEURSHIP – ANJU HAWOLDAR 2580

“Skills can be taught but attitude is what you are born with and what you nurture by breeding the right habits”

It is on these terms that Anju Hawoldar , Brand Ambassador for Decayeux Golf and Director of Oceandash Fresh Seafood Ltd, embarked  on her entrepreneurial journey and has built up a reputation which won her an award in 2017 for ‘Femme Entrepreneur’. The right attitude, according to her has shaped up her journey where passion , precision, dedication and quality are the key ingredients to meet up clients’ expectations. 

Driven , determined and dynamic, she began her career by the set up and launch of an Indian restaurant in Moka and subsequently selling it to meet up new challenges and move in different more promising segments namely : Golf, as the Brand Ambassador for Decayeux Golf; Seafood , as the Director of Oceandash Fresh Seafood Ltd and more recently in property development and real estate sector as a consultant. 

According to her, the secret which fosters the success of an entrepreneur lies in engendering the right attitude “ Skills can be taught but attitude is what you are born with and what you nurture by breeding the right habits. The drive factor for the success of any entrepreneur relies heavily on how result-oriented and how dedicated he is. The pace at which our society is moving and evolving ,embracing culture change and innovation , reasserts my core beliefs about work ethics, discipline and consistency’

Having embraced different work responsibilities and in spite of having herself a very busy schedule, she is adamant that ‘there is a huge difference between business and busyness! It is only by adopting the right mindset  and working towards optimal customer service within set  deadlines in a challenging and competitive environment that one can turn an unproductive busyness in a successful business.

Passion for golf

The past decade has seen a major paradigm shift in the economic players of our market. Anju’s drive to tap in new market opportunities paved her way as Brand Ambassador for Decayeux Golf, a  French company having set up a subsidiary company in Mauritius since two years. Decayeux Golf , based in France has been a pioneer in the processing of metal parts /accessories for luxury goods and jewellery to well reputed houses such as Louis  Vuitton. It has over a century sustained development in this sector and enhanced its expertise to come up with a prestigious line ‘Decayeux Golf’ offering a range  of opulent-statement makers to refined timeless pieces and jewellery  such as Gold plated cufflinks, Belts, Necklaces , Bracelets, Clubhouse lamps, Keyrings and tees (to name a few).

Golf tourism has undoubtedly emerged as a promising sector in the past decade. Our country not only boasts of some of the best 18-holes courses but can at the same time provide the right climatic conditions and hospitality that could propel it from ‘ the new kid on the block as a golf destination’ to being a golf destination par excellence’ 

The market always dictates the rules for entrepreneurs like us and we can only take the cue to go ahead with the launch of a new product when we see old players holding a monopoly of the market but not offering the competitive advantage that we have to offer. Already present on our market are Lacoste and Boss Green for which there is a huge demand from Golfers. However our products at Decayeux Golf have an unparalleled competitive advantage in that these have been designed specifically for golfers. 

Seafood as a growing opportunity 

Being herself a foodie and having held a restaurant for a decade, Anju struggled to find on the local market products which were fresh and readily available upon demand. She saw the huge untapped potential of Oceandash Seafood Ltd and took it over two and half years ago to propel it to another level of distribution targeting Hotels , resorts and key supermarkets. 

As at date the company supplies fresh seafood from Scotland namely Salmon , Oysters, Lobsters, scallops and Mussels. She has through a short span of time, through her premium quality products secured the trust of well established restaurants and hotels around the island. Though according to her the market is “ small, tough and challenging’, she is confident that as long as her products reflect competitive strength and her team is geared towards customer service , she will only be moving a step ahead. As explained , the price-quality equation always comes into play in a market as competitive as seafood. ‘ It is hard to explain at a tasting with a new client why our salmon ( for instance) is different from that coming from Norway. At the end of the day to some clients , Salmon is Salmon. This is when I always point out and re-emphasize the difference between my products and that available on the market. Loch Fyne , the Scottish supplier I am working with , is the proud holder of ‘The Queen’s award for the premium quality of their products. This is in itself a statement”

Being a regular in London , she has always been amazed by the wide range of fresh , high quality products which was available on the market and for which there could be a huge demand on our market. She rightly believes that there has been a change in consumer trends, where people are now looking for a healthier and fresher alternative on their plates. It undeniable that  in recent years there has been an evolution in the quality of products available on supermarket shelves : Food items from Waitrose and Jacobs are now available on the market. With  Oceandash Fresh Seafood Ltd  Anju aims at bringing home, products which are in line with the new market trends keeping in mind the size of the market. 

In spite of the continuous growth of her company , she believes that it is ‘only a baby swimming with the sharks’. So for the next quarters her objective for the company is to conduct a market research to identify new opportunities for the distribution of ready-to-eat and ready-to-cook items given that we are evolving in a fast moving society where people hardly have time to prepare a meal. 

Building on existent work ethics and targeting new markets

What next ? Anju takes a wide interest in the economic development of Mauritius more precisely in property development. Recently she been appointed as a consultant in the real estate sector although she believes that ‘it is quite slow moving at the moment, there is still a potential for growth’ She perceives that land will never be devaluated but will at some point become scarce due to numerous ongoing projects. The key would then lie in tapping revenue in the face of these constraints and opt for smarter development. 

‘No challenge is worth the ride , if when taking it up, there are no struggles involved’

It is on this positive note that she concluded this enlightening interview and adds that she holds quality family time as her priority as this is what keeps her grounded to her core beliefs : humility , dedication and honesty!

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Mauritius B2B Hospitality magazine, a quarterly publication and blog for the industry professionals. Want to reach the hospitality decision makers in Mauritius/Rodrigues? Contact us +230 57 94 64 37 or [email protected]

THE FUTURE OF THE HOSPITALITY SECTOR POST COVID-19 Comments Off on THE FUTURE OF THE HOSPITALITY SECTOR POST COVID-19 380

As the hospitality industry resumes operations, it has been the moment to adapt, redesign and implement new ways and ideas to help the sector accelerate recovery and reinvent the hospitality of tomorrow.

What are the most prominent trends in hospitality today and what will the new customers’ demands be? How are hotels adapting their business operations to receive travellers and go back to business but still remaining sustainable? What are the best ways to gain guests’ confidence back? What is the role of technology in the process? These and more topics will be discussed in this webinar on the future of the hospitality sector post COVID-19, focusing in the Middle East region.

Source – https://www.unwto.org/event/the-future-of-the-hospitality-sector-post-covid-19

THE MALDIVES, MAURITIUS, SRI LANKA, WHO IS DOING WHAT TO RESTORE TRAVEL CONFIDENCE ACROSS THE INDIAN OCEAN Comments Off on THE MALDIVES, MAURITIUS, SRI LANKA, WHO IS DOING WHAT TO RESTORE TRAVEL CONFIDENCE ACROSS THE INDIAN OCEAN 666

After the recent round of short interviews with hospitality leaders in the Maldives, Mauritius, and Sri Lanka, these were the key messages that will win customers back. 

MALDIVES – No social distancing, but a rather physical distancing in the Maldives.

One month ago the Maldives reopened the country borders to international travelers and since then, welcomed nearly 4500 tourists mainly from the UK, USA, UAE, Germany, Swiss, and Russia. With strict health and safety standard procedures implemented across the country, starting from the airport to the resort islands, the ‘new travelers’ have already voiced their appreciation for the level of care and hygiene on various social media and forums. But if being welcomed by the resort representatives wrapped in PPE and armed with face shield, gloves, and masks might not feel like the most relaxing start of a much-needed holiday, Afeef Hussain, Regional Director at LUX* Resorts in the Maldives, reassures that guests do love the feeling of safety 

“Being able to arrive at the resort and start enjoying their vacation right away not having to worry about anything, is what our guests want”

Together with high levels of hygiene, another key element to restoring travel confidence is the value of the experience. Afeef Hussain shares that the ‘new travelers’ are not going to spend the same amount of money they used to. Therefore, the value of the vacation is under great scrutiny and determines whether your customer might decide to return to your hotel or to travel somewhere else. 

“There is no such thing of ‘new normal’, but rather a ‘new mindset’”

To ensure that each action taken to uphold the hygiene standards at the resorts is mutually beneficial, Afeef says that whatever is done for the guests, is also done for the team members. This ensures their wellbeing and wellness and translates the Company’s core message of ‘care’ into action.

SRI LANKA – Borders are closed, but our resorts are not.

Sri Lanka has recently delayed the opening of the country borders, but hotels and resorts across the island are back in business with the local market. The execution of health and safety standards at each property has been instrumental to restore a domestic travel confidence, says Arjuna Perera – Sales Manager at Theme Resorts & SPA based in Colombo. To start with, Arjuna Perera and his team produced a video message to show all the procedures and reassure their customer base. 

‘We immediately created a survey, to help understand what are our customers’ priorities at this critical time’ 

But, as we know, the local market demand alone does not cover it. A voucher system propelled by Arjuna’s sales team successfully generated over 1000 room nights. This shows that flexibility is another key factor to encourage travel demand. Flights can be canceled or delayed, quarantine systems are changing by the day. ‘All we need is a bit of flexibility’ says Arjuna ‘and the results are showing us that people are keen to travel, they just want to feel safe’. 

But how do we ensure social distancing in Sri Lanka? For Theme Resorts & Spa, more than distancing, we talk about isolation, but in a good way. The nature experience of some of their properties is guaranteed to the point that to reach some of their glamping sites, you will have to be picked up by the hotel concierge somewhere in the jungle.

MAURITIUS – A contactless experience and smart use of technology.

As Mauritius prepares to reopen borders next month, the health & safety checklist of the destination seems to grow longer.

The use of technology, however, plays a key role in the destination, currently undergoing a digital transformation with a brand new website, a travel platform in the making and a range of digital solutions for tourists. Airline and travel industry expert Youvraj Seeam, based in Mauritius, shares that to pick up on travel confidence, we first have to observe the consumers’ changing behaviors and thereafter understand the new demands.

“For this to be truly successful, we need collaboration with all the stakeholders across the industry”

Youvraj shares that tools like the Travel Recovery Insights Portal of ARC & Boston Consulting, the McKinsey Travel Pulse, or the Traveller Trends Tracker by Adara must be on top of today’s agenda for the modern marketer. This would enable industry leaders to have more visibility and start making progress along the way.

Based on his experience in the airline industry, the key message needs to revolve around hygiene standards and procedures from the moment the traveler checks-in, boards the plane and reaches the destination. Once arrived, says Youvraj, a contactless experience needs to be in place to ensure a safe transit until the guest ultimately reaches the hotel.

 About the author:

Dolores Semeraro is a multilingual professional speaker and trainer, fluent in the Chinese language. She provides strategic direction and training courses to companies and tourism institutions helping them to speak today’s digital language of their audience. Her vision is to create a sustainable digital connection between travel industry stakeholders and their desired customers.