ITB Berlin 2010 has kicked-off to an excellent start as our CEO completes a contract of partnership with Micros as RateTiger technologies further integrates with Micros Opera suite to provide channel management features. Our sales managers have also been bouncing around the very large exhibition centre meeting with hotels chains and property owners to display the wide-range of services RateTiger provides.
This year we are also providing support to manage Advertising campaigns with our special partner TravelScream; hoteliers seem to be lapping this up while trying to get their head around how we are integrating all their processes into one – their eyes often beam when we say that as they realise how much time they will save.
Our RTSchool is being received with great interest, the Distribution Days in May and June will help hoteliers understand and get a greater grasp of multi-channel sales through a programme exploring channel management in changing markets with Xotels.
This year we have installed a large and impressive touch-screen display on our stand in hall 8.1 which is currently running the RateTiger iPhone application. Those RateTiger team members with an iPhone are proudly and excitedly presenting it to all delegates visiting us.
There is a constant stream of attendees through the Technology Hall all of which are at least pausing by the RateTiger stand in interest. It seems this is the year of channel management – we are all really feeling it, suddenly hoteliers truly understand how these technologies work and the necessity for them.
Ryan Haynes is the Marketing Head at eRevMax and is responsible for driving all PR and Marketing activities of RateTiger and eRevMax brands globally. Ryan is based out of London and can be reached at email@example.com
With various hospitality focused events taking place around the globe, we try our best to find out the best ones to attend. Recently I visited a couple of events – TFP in Milan and Revenue Day in Rome. Both were completely different events and though TFP Milan had a good turn-out, I really enjoyed the much smaller Revenue Day session which was very interesting and focused.
TFP was massive in scale with over 2500 people present but since the focus was focused on hospitality recruitment, I found the event to be a bit boring. On the other hand Revenue Day had around 50 hoteliers and the main speaker was the famous Italian Revenue Manager Franco Grasso who did an interesting training type session on revenue strategies.
I also got an opportunity to do a short presentation explaining how to apply Revenue Management through technology products like RTSuite and RTStrategyEngine. I was also invited to share inputs on channel management opportunities present to hoteliers today. Other discussion topics included Web 2.0, Brand Reputation, etc.
I feel such training sessions and Revenue Day organized by different associations are very helpful , not only for us as technology providers but also for hoteliers as they get exposed to various upcoming and useful tools that can be of immense help in their day to day operations.
I look forward to researching and attending various other such events in Italy.
Enzo Aita is Sales Manager – Italy at eRevMax and is responsible for sales of RateTiger products in the region. Enzo is based out of Italy and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Organized at St. Petersburg/Clearwater from January 24 through to January 26, 2010, Florida Huddle turned out to be a great event for me.
The event focuses completely on buyer-supplier meetings and is a good platform to meet prospective buyers and close deals. A new segment called the Travel Service Provider has now been incorporated as well. However they need to clearly define the requisites to qualify as supplier and /or travel service provider.
The discussions at the event revolved around the current economic scenario, similar to the OHV agenda. Hoteliers in Florida too are driving occupancy and not ADR. More than 165 hoteliers were present in the total gathering of 200 plus visitors and all were eager to find out the best way to take prices up again.
From the business perspective, presence at Florida Huddle is always lucrative as it allows decision makers from the buyer and supplier sides to meet directly and cut deals. RateTiger too signed many new contracts at the event and it was a very successful event for all involved.
Siobhain McArdle is Sales Manager for south eastern states of USA at eRevMax and is responsible for sales of RateTiger products in the region. She is based out of Florida and can be reached at email@example.com
The Central Florida chapter of HSMAI organizes quarterly Luncheons for its members to meet and discuss the latest happenings in the field of revenue management over a hearty meal. On June 19, 2009 they hosted the Revenue Manager’s Luncheon at the Regal Sun Resort in Orlando.
The topic for the luncheon was “Market Conditions, Strategies, and New Technologies in Challenging times”.
Phil Stiles, Vice President of Sales, RateTiger, Daryl Cronk, Director of Research, Orlando/Orange County Conventions & Visitor’s Bureau and Debbie Morris, Founder and owner, Web Resource Management were invited for a panel discussion on the subject.
Phil describes his experience of the event, “The event was very productive as it allowed focused discussion on the ground realities of the hotel and travel market, specifically in Orlando. It was well attended and the presence of over 55 members, including Expedia and Travelocity signifies how relevant these sessions are to the industry.”
“HSMAI’s luncheon events are popular due to the fact that it allows meaningful networking with focused group of people and all involved benefit out of the process. RateTiger sponsored this event and I have to say it was worth it,’ concludes Phil.
RateTiger US Sales Manager Siobhain McArdle did a brief presentation on RateTiger products which was very well received by the attendees. Various queries came in after the event indicating how hoteliers are looking at technology more than ever to tide over the current scenario.
Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition & Conference, HITEC, is today considered one of the world’s largest hospitality technology events. It took place from June 22-25, 2009 at the Anaheim Convention Center in California USA. RateTiger was represented by Sascha Hausmann, COO and Phil Stiles, VP of Sales.
As expected the attendance was lower than in previous years by around 35 to 45%. The main theme of the event was partnerships and product launches. Many travel technology companies announced partnerships and integrations to further help the industry offer seamless connectivity and better technologies.
At HITEC we announced our integration partnerships with Trust International and Micros as the travel industry moves towards automated online distribution. Seamless connectivity remains the priority for PMS / CRS companies and channel management is now used to supplement where XML seamless connectivity cannot be established technically or from a ROI perspective for existing key players.
A new addition to this year’s HITEC was the Roundtable session, one of which was hosted by RateTiger. Sascha led a discussion on – ‘Maximizing revenue during turbulent economic times: has seamless connectivity failed?’ He considers Roundtables to be a good concept which encouraged considerable knowledge exchange and he would like to see this becoming a regular feature at HITEC.
The Twitter discussion had the most successful roundtable attendance Digital and social media is what hotels are focusing on to get those ‘more-than-ever important’ travelers’ attention. So gear up people!
RateTiger also hosted a tutorial session on ‘Channel Management and the traditional reservation system’. Phil and Sascha had a good audience who understood the relevance of the topic and requested further information to make better buying decisions.
This year’s event turned out to be more of an exhibitor-meet-exhibitor show than a visitor-meet-exhibitor show. RateTiger did meet with some hoteliers and provided product demonstrations. Their feedback conveyed their trust in our brand and made us aware of the fact that RateTiger is identified as a company which innovates constantly and has relevant new tools to offer, which is what we continually aim for. HITEC rocks!
Italian magazine Job in Tourism organizes the Web in Tourism conference annually where leading experts from the industry are invited to discuss on the opportunities available in the e-space for the tourism industry. This year’s edition was held on 28 May 2009 in Milan.
RateTiger’s CEO and co-founder Andrew Morsi, being a well known figure in the Italian hospitality circuit, was invited as one of the guest speakers for the conference. The event was attended by over 300 hoteliers including general managers, revenue and sales managers, hotel owners among others.
The principal discussion topics included future of online tourism, importance of digital marketing and communication, reputation management strategies, brand website optimization etc. Mr. Andrew Morsi presented on the topic – ‘The next big evolution in Online Distribution’ which was received well by the audience.
Andrew emphasized the importance of having an online presence, specifically for hotels, as more people are referring to the internet while planning their holidays. People are using the web for user reviews, researching and, best rates etc. Hotels need to be competitive when providing rates and availability across various distribution channels to generate relevant bookings and maximize opportunities.
The event was worth attending and we look forward to future editions of the same.
See photos from the event.
We were invited to speak at the HSMA conference on February 11th in Germany by the HSMA, IFH in connection with the German Hotel Association (IHA) as key sponsors of the event. The entire day was dedicated to electronic marketing and how to make the best out of internet marketing opportunities.
During the morning we listened to representatives from Google describing marketing opportunities for travel companies; Lufthansa showing how airlines manage passengers and use the internet to ease procedures; Micros-Fidelio talking about integrated e-commerce solutions; as well as, various consulting companies presenting how the internet and web 2.0 provide opportunities and challenges.
In the afternoon the crowd of approximately 180 people was able to select from various workshops that would allow for deeper inside info. For example newsletter marketing, search-engine-optimization, legal aspects of web 2.0, RFP procedures as well as integrated revenue management and distribution systems.
We were asked to talk about Metasearch and Channel management – the balance between customer and hotel. During the workshop we established what channel management and metasearch are, how they influence consumer & hotel behaviour and how they are going to develop in the near future. As I love to show the hotel world how inconsistency is transparent on the web, we also walked through an example of why it is important to manage rates & availability properly. I managed to find a hotel during my research for the workshop that had different rates on different travel metasearches and even within the same search engine! I am sure that revenue was lost there…
After the workshops the organizers presented a panel discussion between Trivago, Holidaycheck, Choice Hotels and Romantik Hotels about Hotel-Review-Platforms. To my surprise, the audience was very switched on and engaged…. even at 6pm.
Overall the event was well received. The organizers could have done improved with some of the presenters though. When you present at a nearly 200 people event, you have to make sure your presentation is sharp, informative and interesting enough to follow along. That wasn’t always the case for some…..
We attended the annual Travel Technology and Business Travel Show last week to meet customers, potential new clients and find out how our business partners are coping with 2009. The event hosted at Earls Court in London brings together the UK corporate travel companies to discuss technology and trends in business travel.
We were hoping to see a few PMS systems, but not this year. The whole Travel Technology Show was smaller than previous years with only a few booking systems and data management companies. On the second day the number of attendees seemed very low. Many of the businesses exhibiting at the fair admitted it had been much quieter than 2008.
During the Business Travel Show, the current economic conditions were mentioned a number of times by various people and very few were optimistic about the upcoming year. We also noticed an increase in the number of apartment companies who were exhibiting, but many do not sell through on-line bookings yet and therefore do not understand the opportunities of online channel management technologies.
Only very few hotels were exhibiting although we did have the chance to have lengthy conversations with the groups that were present. It is pre-dominantly a show for Travel Management companies and considering, the shows are run together, there were very few Online Travel Agencies. We spoke to HRS, Hotel.info and Hotelshop UK Ltd. all of whom said they liked the show, but it certainly did not seem busy to us. Furthermore, unfortunately, none of the seminars were relevant to us deciding to look at the credit crunch and social media tools to increase online visibility.