August 2017 – Wilderness Holdings has published its seventh annual Integrated Report (IR), outlining the Group’s progress and challenges faced during the 2017 financial year, based on the company’s 4Cs sustainability framework of Commerce, Community, Culture and Conservation.
“By successfully integrating our financial and 4Cs sustainability framework into one coherent report, we continue to demonstrate that each aspect of our business is as important as the other. We have to do well in order to affect change but we have also demonstrated that by making a difference, we can also create value for our shareholders”, said Wilderness Commercial Director, Derek de la Harpe.
As a company born and bred in Botswana in 1983, Wilderness Holdings has now been listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange, with a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, for seven years. It has been maintaining detailed sustainability data for five of these years, and is now able to show long-term trends in data for the most important key performance indicators, as highlighted in the FY17 IR.
“This further demonstrates that Wilderness makes investments and manages its business for the long run. After nearly 35 years in business it is sometimes hard to remember why you started out and what you originally hoped to achieve, however, for us, our reason for being is even more firmly entrenched and defined than ever before. Simply put, our vision remains to conserve and restore Africa’s wilderness and wildlife by creating life-changing journeys and inspiring positive action”, added de la Harpe.
In line with the United Nation’s International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, the FY17 IR also includes links to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and illustrates how Wilderness is striving to contribute to the achievement of a number of these goals. Wilderness’ 4Cs and the company’s tourism model aligns perfectly with the International Year’s aim to promote tourism’s role in the following five key areas:
- Inclusive and sustainable economic growth (commerce)
- Social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction (community)
- Resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change (conservation)
- Cultural values, diversity and heritage (culture)
- Mutual understanding, peace and security (culture, conservation and community)
The 2017 financial year saw a number of highlights for the Group, including further investments into solar energy and the launch of Bisate Lodge in Rwanda. In brief, highlights included the following:
- Revenue up by 18% to P1 107 million
- EBITDA up 5% to P209 million
- Community donations show a steady overall increase
- Total community partnership values have shown steady growth across all regions since 2013
- We have achieved a 3% reduction in numbers of non-citizens in our workforce since 2013
- Printing and distribution of the Wilderness Ethics Charter and Codes of Conduct for Cultural Tourism
- Introduction of Cultural Stories to raise awareness
- Conservation contribution increased by 33% since 2013
- Energy consumption has reduced by 18% since 2013
- Solar systems are producing 6 372kWh per day
To read the full Integrated Report, click here and to read the shortened version of the Report, published as Wilderness Holdings Sustainability Review, click here.