Manzi Kayihura was appointed Executive Chairman of the new Wilderness Rwanda Board on 1 March 2022. As the co-founder and Managing Director of Thousand Hills Africa, a leading Destination Management Company in East Africa, Manzi has worked closely with Wilderness for many years, and looks forward to his exciting next chapter, helping to grow conservation tourism in Rwanda.
Manzi is an international airline and travel management professional with over 30 years’ experience in the industry, 17 of which have been in senior management/ownership positions. He is also a former CEO of Rwanda’s national airline.
Returning to Rwanda from Germany after 14 years, Manzi brought his exceptional industry insight, and significant skills in marketing, analysis, planning, and negotiation to the development of Rwandan travel and tourism, and is actively involved in the sector.
Manzi was also a member of the Tourism Working Group responsible for defining Rwanda’s tourism strategy. He is a founding member and past Chairman of the Rwanda Tours and Travel Association, and is the outgoing Chairman and founding member of the East African Tourism Platform. He sits on the Board of Directors of Akagera Aviation, and is on the Board of Trustees of Aegis Trust.
As a pioneer in high-end tourism in Rwanda, Manzi is a partner in Wilderness Safaris’ exceptional Bisate Lodge and Magashi Camp, and has played a crucial role in helping grow the Wilderness Safaris Rwanda business, and showcase Rwanda’s rich diversity and unique offerings to the world.
While global expansion is part of Wilderness Safaris’ longer-term strategy, its vision is to continue to protect the interests of Rwanda and its people. Manzi and the Wilderness Rwanda Board will play an important role in ensuring that the country remains a key focus for Wilderness’ Group portfolio. Furthermore, Manzi will also assume an advisory role for the Wilderness Rwanda business.
According to Manzi, “It is extremely rewarding to experience how Rwanda is evolving, and exciting to continue my journey with Wilderness Safaris. I look forward to helping grow our business and travel circuit in the country, while making a positive impact on the wildlife and communities”.
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