Unlocking Opportunities at Africa Hospitality Investment Forum (AHIF): Interview with Matthew Weihs, Group Managing Director, The Bench

Matthew Weihs in Africa Hotel Vista
One-on-One with Matthew Weihs

 In our latest interview, part of the Africa Hotel Vista video series by Africa Hotel Report, we sat down with Matthew Weihs, the esteemed Group Managing Director of The Bench. Here, he highlights the unique opportunities AHIF provides for hoteliers and developers eager to delve into the African market.


With over two decades of experience in business-to-business conferences, Matthew Weihs is renowned for his expertise in creating compelling business propositions and forging strategic partnerships. His visionary leadership has been instrumental in expanding Bench’s event portfolio and consolidating its position as a leader in hospitality services in the EMEA region. Matthew’s multifaceted contributions to both the hospitality industry and society at large underscore his unwavering dedication to driving positive change.

Insights by Matthew Weihs

Here is all the things Matthew discussed in the latest episode of Africa Hotel Vista:

The Unique Platform of AHIF

Reflecting on the distinctive platform AHIF provides, Matthew Weihs elucidates, “The Africa Hospitality Investment Forum is really a meeting place that brings together the investors, the owners, the developers, the financiers, and the operators and the advisory firms to really come together and discuss business deals and transactions for the continent.” Emphasizing the significance of this forum, he underscores its unparalleled role in fostering collaborations and fostering industry insights that are otherwise challenging to attain.


Facilitating Networking and Partnerships

When queried about AHIF’s role in facilitating networking and partnerships between international investors and local businesses, Matthew Weihs underscores the event’s core ethos, stating, “Networking is at the heart of all our event portfolio.” He elaborates on the diverse mechanisms employed, including pre-event meetings facilitated through applications, networking express sessions, and sponsor interactions. These avenues converge to create a dynamic environment conducive to forging meaningful connections and partnerships.


AHIF’s Impact on Deal-Making

Drawing upon past successes, Matthew Weihs highlights AHIF’s profound impact on deal-making within the hospitality sector. Notably, success stories like Best Western Hotels’ acquisition of new clientele underscore AHIF’s instrumental role in catalyzing business opportunities.

Previewing the Upcoming AHIF

Looking ahead to the upcoming AHIF, Matthew Weihs previews the thematic landscape, noting a focus on emerging trends such as resort development and branded residencies. The event aims to explore opportunities in alternative real estate asset classes while addressing pertinent industry challenges such as sustainability and female empowerment. AHIF’s agenda aligns seamlessly with the evolving needs of the hospitality landscape, ensuring relevance and impact.

About AHIF

The Africa Hospitality Investment Forum (AHIF) stands as a premier platform for industry stakeholders to gather, collaborate, and seize emerging opportunities within the African hospitality sector. Renowned for fostering meaningful connections and delivering tangible outcomes, AHIF consistently shapes the future of hospitality investment across the continent.

About The Bench

The Bench is a prominent hospitality company specializing in organizing influential B2B events within the hospitality, tourism, and aviation industries. Founded in 1996, it has become known for creating impactful events such as the Future Hospitality Summit (FHS), Arabian Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC), and AviaDev. These events gather industry leaders, investors, and experts to discuss innovation, investment opportunities, and sustainability, fostering growth and transformation through high-level networking and insights.

About Africa Hotel Vista

“Africa Hotel Vista” stands as a preeminent platform for thought leadership in the African hospitality industry. Its monthly video series delves into key trends and discussions shaping the future of the sector, serving as an essential resource for professionals exploring the intricacies and opportunities within the dynamic landscape of African hospitality.