The Protea Hospitality Group has appointed African travel specialist Ferruccio Tirone to market the hotel company’s 120+ properties spread across eight countries on the continent.

Tirone, who is based in Italy, will specifically be working with the MICE market in France, Italy and Scandinavia, showcasing the superior conferencing services and facilities of both African Pride Hotels and Protea Hotels.

Tirone started his professional career with South Africa in 1988 and became part of Il Diamante Tour Operator, at the time recognised by the market as one of the top Tour Operators for this destination. Over the past decade Tirone has launched and successfully developed the South African market for many prestigious tour operators including FrancoRosso International, Hotelplan and Turisanda.

Tirone’s experience of working as General Manager for a niche tour operator specialized in high-level tailor-made business led him to open Controvento Marketing & Communications, a tourism representation agency, in 2004. Controvento has become one the most professional and respected representative agencies in the industry specialising in Africa, the Indian Ocean islands and in the United Arab Emirates with a portfolio of DMC, hotel chains and individual properties.

Protea Hospitality Group International Sales Manager Philippa Chesler said there was no doubt Tirone would achieve great things for African Pride Hotels and Protea Hotels in the European MICE market. “He has terrific reach and the highest quality properties to market, so we know it’s the right choice,” Chesler said.