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The Rocco Forte Collection Names Karim Naffah as the
New Managing Director of the Company

 
London, UK – June 30, 2010 --The Rocco Forte Collection today announced that it has appointed Karim Naffah as the company’s new managing director with immediate effect.   
 
Naffah, 47, has acted as a consultant to the company since July 2009 during which he has assisted with the company’s successful refinancing and helped drive improvements in the performance management and corporate governance of the group of luxury hotels and resorts.
 
The new appointment will enable Sir Rocco Forte, founder and executive chairman of the group, to devote more time to spearheading the expansion of the business primarily via management contracts.  He will also be able to focus to a greater degree on working with the hotels and the company’s sales and marketing forces to promote the on-going development of the brand. 
 
Sir Rocco Forte said that the company had been looking to strengthen its senior team as the group continued to expand, “The growth of our portfolio requires the fortification of our management structures as well as business planning, performance and governance processes to ensure its continued success and outperformance within a highly competitive marketplace. 
 
“Karim’s role will be primarily focused on the continuation of the company’s successful drive to advance performance and to work with me on the future strategic development of the business.  In doing so he will lead a team of experienced directors, including finance director Alan Clark, brand managing director Richard Power and operations director Martin Elsner. 
 
“We have selected Karim for his proven ability to establish robust business planning and performance disciplines, in addition to his strategic skills,” said Forte,  “As we have got to know Karim over the past 12 months we have been impressed by his leadership qualities and understanding of our culture and approach. His level-headed style has gained the respect of employees and business partners and we are all very pleased that he is joining our company on a permanent basis.” 
 
Prior to joining The Rocco Forte Collection Naffah gained more than 18 years of experience in strategy and finance roles in the leisure and hospitality industry. 
 
His previous roles include strategy director at Bass PLC/Six Continents PLC where he played a key part in the business planning and performance management of the FTSE 100 Group. In addition he oversaw the strategic transformation of the Group culminating in the successful demerger of Six Continents hotel and pub divisions.  
 
Following the demerger, Naffah joined Mitchells & Butlers in 2003 as its finance director to establish the pubs group as an independently listed company. He implemented new performance and reporting measures; devised a successful business securitisation model to finance the group; and oversaw the acquisition of 239 pub restaurants in 2006. 
 
Born in Beirut, Lebanon, Naffah was educated at Harrow School and Lincoln College, Oxford University.  He speaks English, French, Arabic and Spanish.  Post graduation, Naffah spent seven years with management consultancy Bain & Company.

The Rocco Forte Collection
 
The Rocco Forte Collection is a family of 13 individual hotels and resorts. Each property has a unique style, reflecting its nationality and location, but all share The Rocco Forte Collection’s trademark attention to detail, high quality and immaculate service.
 
Established by Sir Rocco Forte in 1996, The Rocco Forte Collection comprises: Hotel de Russie, Rome; Hotel Savoy, Florence; The Balmoral, Edinburgh; The Lowry Hotel, Manchester; Hotel Astoria, St Petersburg; Hotel Amigo, Brussels; Brown’s Hotel, London; Villa Kennedy, Frankfurt; Hotel de Rome, Berlin; Le Richemond, Geneva; The Charles Hotel, Munich; The Augustine, Prague; Verdura Golf & Spa Resort, Sicily. Future openings: Abu Dhabi 2010; Marrakech 2012; Jeddah 2012; Cairo 2012.
 
For further information please visit The Rocco Forte Collection website: www.roccofortecollection.com.

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Contact: 

Jessica Aufiero/Katherine Hurd
Susan Magrino Agency
(212) 957-3005
jessica.aufiero@smapr.com
 

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Also See: Sir Rocco Forte, Steve Rushmore and S. Truett Cathy to be Inducted into the Hospitality Hall of Honor at University of Houston’s Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management / August 2008
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