Monday, July 15, 2024

Cyprus Business Week Review: Challenges in Hospitality, Forecast for Hotel Occupancy, and the Growing Startup Ecosystem


Cyprus Business Now: Weekly Wrap-Up

This week’s business landscape in Cyprus has been a blend of cautious optimism and strategic initiatives across various sectors. From the hospitality industry’s efforts to rebound from a challenging Easter season to the innovation in the startup ecosystem, here’s the rundown of the key developments.

The Easter Impact on Hospitality

The Easter holiday season witnessed a notable decline in business for restaurants, bars, and other venues, observed Neophytos Thrasyvoulou, the president of the Federation of Leisure Centre Owners (Osika). The 50 per cent downturn was largely attributed to the discrepancy in Catholic and Orthodox Easter dates, which saw a preference for family gatherings amongst Cypriots over tourist activities. This has had a ripple effect on the sector, emphasizing the need for adaptive strategies in future holiday seasons.

Summer Outlook for Hotels

Forecasts for summer hotel occupancy show a cautious scenario, influenced by external factors like the Israel conflict and economic strains in the UK—a vital source of tourists for Cyprus. Thanos Michaelides of the hotelier’s association highlighted the current lag in bookings for summer 2024, despite efforts to diversify tourist markets by targeting countries like Poland, France, and Germany.

Boosting the Startup Ecosystem

The government’s commitment to fostering innovation is evident through initiatives announced by Deputy Minister of Research Nicodemos Damianou. These include a tax exemption for innovative businesses and a startup visa scheme. With 38 innovation certificates issued last year, these measures promise to enhance Cyprus’s attractiveness as a startup hub.’s Milestone, a trading platform headquartered in Cyprus, achieved noteworthy success with trading volumes surpassing $1.2 trillion—a 53 per cent increase from the year before. This accomplishment underscores the platform’s growing influence and the vibrancy of Cyprus’s financial services sector.

Internship Opportunities with Idek

The Research and Innovation Foundation (Idek) is offering internships at 61 companies for students, bridging academic learning with practical industry experience from June to September 2024. This initiative opens doors for both undergraduates and postgraduates to gain valuable insights into their fields of interest.

Humanitarian Efforts by the Cyprus Union of Shipowners

In a significant humanitarian gesture, the Cyprus Union of Shipowners is donating €300,000 in food aid to Gaza. This action, part of the Republic of Cyprus’ Amalthea initiative, reflects the maritime community’s solidarity with those in need.

Real Estate Rebound

The real estate sector is witnessing a resurgence, with property sales in April 2024 showing a 15 per cent increase from the previous year. This positive trend, reflected across Nicosia, Larnaca, and Limassol, indicates renewed interest and confidence in Cyprus’s property market.

Maritime and Tourism Initiatives

Efforts to promote the shipping industry and enhance Cyprus’s competitiveness were reiterated by Deputy Minister of Shipping Marina Hadjimanoli at the Great Britain-Cyprus Business Association’s International Investment Conference. Meanwhile, Deputy Minister of Tourism Kostas Koumis outlined promotional strategies to attract tourists from the UAE, spotlighting the potential of this emerging market.

Bank of Cyprus Dividend Announcement

The Bank of Cyprus introduced the option for shareholders to receive dividends electronically, signaling progress towards modernizing its financial services and enhancing shareholder convenience.

Spotlight on Freedom Holding Corp.

In an exclusive interview, Timur Turlov, CEO of Freedom Holding Corp., shared insights into the company’s growth and strategic focus. With over 300 employees in its European division based in Cyprus, the company is poised for further expansion and impact in the region.

As Cyprus navigates through external challenges and capitalizes on new opportunities, the resilience and adaptability of its business sectors continue to be crucial for sustainable growth. The week’s developments reflect a dynamic blend of innovation, humanitarianism, and strategic foresight, setting a hopeful trajectory for the business landscape.

Alex Sterling
Alex Sterling
Alex Sterling is a seasoned journalist with over a decade of experience covering the dynamic world of business and finance. With a keen eye for detail and a passion for uncovering the stories behind the headlines, Alex has become a respected voice in the industry. Before joining our business blog, Alex reported for major financial news outlets, where they developed a reputation for insightful analysis and compelling storytelling. Alex's work is driven by a commitment to provide readers with the information they need to make informed decisions. Whether it's breaking down complex economic trends or highlighting emerging business opportunities, Alex's writing is accessible, informative, and always engaging.

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