The Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group has won the African Excellence Award 2015 for the most outstanding PR and communications strategy in Africa.
The Group has been recognized for its crisis communication plan and the support provided by the teams of the Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel, Freetown during the Ebola virus epidemic in East Africa. Over 2,600 entrants from around the world competed in the Excellence Awards.
The Excellence Awards are a global brand rewarding outstanding achievements in the field of PR and communications on five continents. They recognize companies that have been primarily responsible for much of human progress in the past several hundred years, and that help move their industry forward through their communications efforts.
A month after the Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel opened its doors in Freetown, Sierra Leone, the first case of Ebola was diagnosed in the country. Rezidor implemented a series of safety and security measures to prevent any of its staff or guests being infected. The Group also ensured transparent, continuous and regular communication with its employees, the media and relevant stakeholders to raise awareness about prevention methods and to clarify the myths surrounding the outbreak.
The Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel, Freetown was identified as the safest environment to stay or conduct business during the epidemic. It became the most trusted location in Sierra Leone for key media, international aid workers and government officials.
“We are extremely proud to win this unique international award. What our team did in Sierra Leone – to protect team members and guests from a global epidemic, help raise awareness in the world about prevention and promote a better understanding of a deadly virus that changed the world forever – goes far beyond our Yes I Can! spirit. It truly shows our ability to harness adversity and deliver service with a Fighting Z-pirit attitude every single day,” commented Renu Hanegreefs-Snehi, Head of PR, Brand & Marketing Communications at the Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group.
“This recognition means so much to me and my team,” added Nuno Neves, General Manager of the Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel, Freetown. “It’s an additional confirmation that the effort to instill trust, loyalty and confidence – externally and internally – is recognized and rewarded globally. During the outbreak, the Radisson Blu Mammy Yoko Hotel, Freetown was the only international hotel operating in town. We did not give up, but rose to face the crisis. We continued to provide hospitality to our guests and salaries to our employees” he continued.
Nuno Neves will receive the award during the African Excellence Awards gala ceremony in Cape Town on April 21, 2016.
The African Excellence Awards are inspired by the European Excellence Awards and are hosted by Communication Director, an internationally-focused magazine for corporate communications, PR and public affairs. Now in their ninth year, the Excellence Awards are considered one of the greatest sources of recognition for communicators.