Ovolo Founder and Executive Chairman Girish Jhunjhnuwala alongside new CEO Dave Baswal.

Ovolo Hotels Founder and Executive Chairman Girish Jhunjhnuwala is stepping back from the position of Chief Executive Officer to focus more on the branding, development, and strategic growth of the business, the boutique hotel company announced on Thursday morning.

Ovolo’s Managing Director ANZ, Dave Baswal, has been promoted to lead the business as CEO.  

Baswal has 20 years’ experience in hospitality, finance and real estate management, and has played a significant role in the company’s growth during the pandemic.

“Dave Baswal personifies the very best of Ovolo – someone with the passion to constantly improve the guest experience; the creativity to innovate new services; and the business acumen to deliver strong performance,” said Jhunjhnuwala.

“Most importantly, he shares the same people-centric ethos that is at the very heart of Ovolo, delivering happiness to our guests, our teams, and our stakeholders.”

Baswal is a National Board Advisory Member of Tourism Accommodation Australia and former executive at Mantra Group. He holds a Master’s in Professional Accounting, a Master’s in International Tourism and a Bachelor in Hotel Management.

He said he is honoured to have been entrusted with taking the mantle as CEO.

“Girish has been such an inspiration to me, and all our team members and he remains the heart and soul of Ovolo,” Baswal said.

“He has a created a brand that deeply resonates with today’s travellers and that inspires our team to deliver exceptional service every day.”

‘The perfect time to evolve’

Jhunjhnuwala said he is excited to explore opportunities to take the Ovolo experience to more travellers globally.

“I started my journey in real estate 20 years ago and launched Ovolo Hotels in 2010, and this is the perfect time to evolve the group under a reinvigorated leadership,” he said.

“Dave has the trust of myself and our stakeholders, and his promotion will create new opportunities for the rest of our team. I am excited for what the future holds.”

Ovolo currently has 13 hotels and a dozen restaurants across Hong Kong, Australia and Indonesia. Baswal takes up the role as the company pushes forward with recovery and explores expansion opportunities across Asia Pacific, Europe and the US.

“I am honoured to lead this amazing group and to take Ovolo into its next phase at a time of enormous opportunity,” Baswal said.

Jhunjhnuwala will remain “intrinsically involved in all aspects of the business”, the company said.