I am writing this week’s Siegel Sez from my hotel room in Las Vegas before heading over to the final day of the Global Gaming Expo, more commonly referred to as G2E. This event isn’t really heavy on hotel technology, but if you want to see the next generation of slot machines, this is the place. It is kind of amazing what these companies create; I’m not sure why anybody would play them, but then again what do I know when it comes to why people play slot machines. G2E is making a big push to grow the hotel side of its event with this year’s introduction of the Integrated Resort Experience. I talked to Mike Benjamin from Guestware early in the show and he was a first-time exhibitor at G2E. When we talked, he shared that the jury was still out regarding returning next year. Sometimes you just have to try things in business. I had the opportunity to moderate a panel on the State of Loyalty and Revenue Management, and many of the attendees in the session came up afterwards and said they really enjoyed it. Putting a value on a guest in the hotel business is always a challenge, but when you also include how much they play in the casino into the mix, it becomes very interesting. We all learned a lot. One thing G2E does as well as HITEC is the party activities. I must thank Cisco, Agilysys and Rainmaker for inviting me to their parties, though I am paying the price this morning as I write Siegel Sez. Didn’t someone once say if you want to play, you’ve got to pay? Today is payday! I am sure I will survive, just one more day.
Next week I am off to the Lodging Conference, which is another aspect of the industry I enjoy. Every event I attend has its fair share of wheeling and dealing, but when it comes to buying and selling hotels, this is the place. It has also been interesting to hear how those who own hotels look at the technology challenges in the industry. Historically, feedback is all over the place, but it should be interesting to get updates this year with all the changes that are happening.
Nothing is more exciting in my world then buying a baby horse, and watching him grow up and learn to run. You want to make a thoroughbred happy? Let him run, that is what they love more than anything. Our 2-year-old is named Bridgemont after a small town in England. He is running his first race at Santa Anita Park near Los Angeles on Friday, Oct 9th. If you are in the area and want to enjoy a different aspect of horse racing, please drop me a note at mailto:email@example.com. There is nothing more exciting than a first race. Until that point it is nonstop dreaming – Kentucky Derby here we come! ?
Here now is the real reason we are here, Dan Phillips’ review of the latest happenings in the technology world. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. Go Bridgemont!
by: Dan Phillips
Recent headlines, from Dan Phillips
Big Data. It is a term that has been used for a while now. Some people are getting away from that, using terms like “analytics.” But, let’s just use Big Data for a moment. Would it mean much to you if you knew that eBay, for example, may collect more than 30 million pieces of data a month? Or, perhaps your imagination might try to fathom Big Data in a big hotel company, like IHG, just for example: • More than 4,600 hotels with 675,000+ rooms worldwide • Sells more than 150 million room nights per year • Has more than 71 million people in its loyalty program • Has alliances with 45 airlines
During just one guest’s lifecycle with just one hotel reservation, how many points of data are created? Then, multiply that by the numbers above. You can quickly see that Big Data is probably bigger than we can imagine.
As a technologist, you have to become knowledgeable about Big Data and how hotel marketing and operations folks will want to begin to leverage it. First, how and from what sources can you collect it? Second, once you get it all, how do you ensure that it is accurate, timely and applicable? Third, how can you then implement that data to increase guest satisfaction and drive the revenue to more than cover the costs of data acquisition? Hospitality, it’s no longer just heads in beds! Look to some of the articles in the Piqued Dan’s Interest section regarding Big Data.
- Is Location Data the Same as Local Data - Google’s New Interactive Tool, “Travel Dashboard,” Details Quarterly Travel Industry Trends - Part 8 in a Series from Hospitality Upgrade – Flex Your Data Muscles: A 12-Month Challenge to Get Analytics Working For You --------------------------
- Peter Holmes Joins the Rainmaker Group as Director of Strategic Accounts -------------------------- Peter Holmes Joins the Rainmaker Group as Director of Strategic Accounts Peter Holmes, a hospitality industry veteran, has joined The Rainmaker Group as director of strategic accounts. Rainmaker is a market leader in profit optimization solutions servicing hotels, casino hotels and resorts, but its acclaimed company culture is what attracted Holmes to the post. "Before joining Rainmaker, I heard clients rave about the company and its customer focus," said Holmes. "The endorsements made my decision an easy one. Employees are engaged, connected and empowered, and customer input is actively solicited and embraced. It's a compelling culture, and I'm happy to be a part of it." http://www.letitrain.com/ **
GUEST MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS
- RoomKeyPMS is Now Certified by Shift4 for EMV Implementation - Industry-leading Lodging Management System by Agilysys Now Available as a Hosted Solution -------------------------- RoomKeyPMS is Now Certified by Shift4 for EMV Implementation RoomKeyPMS announced that it has completed the Shift4 EMV Chip-and-PIN certification process. With the deadline looming for EMV implementation, hoteliers are looking to their PMS companies for this integration assistance. EMV is a special microprocessor chip embedded within a credit or debit card to help prevent counterfeiting, skimming and the use of lost or stolen payment cards. Hotels that implement terminals fitted for EMV would no longer be liable for card-present credit card fraud. Terminals not fitted for EMV can leave hotels liable for losses or chargebacks. Integration of EMV will also allow many customers to utilize debit cards where they could not before. http://roomkeypms.com/ ** Industry-leading Lodging Management System by Agilysys Now Available as a Hosted Solution Agilysys announced that its industry-leading Lodging Management System (LMS™) property management solution is now available as a hosted solution. LMS, a longtime favorite PMS of the casino hotel industry, has recently been expanded to include a software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering in addition to traditional on-site deployment. Key benefits of SaaS deployment include accelerated return on investment, more predictable IT costs, reduced security and compliance risk, and flexible growth. http://www.agilysys.com/ **
- Tambourine Launches Symphony, a Service that Manages Hotel E-commerce Across All Digital Channels - Expedia Unveils PartnerCentral, a Mobile App for Hoteliers -------------------------- Tambourine Launches Symphony, a Service that Manages Hotel E-commerce Across All Digital Channels Tambourine, a hotel marketing and technology company, has publicly launched Symphony, a tool that combines digital marketing, booking and distribution. Symphony has been in testing for more than a year at 100-plus hotels worldwide, with properties experiencing an average 8 percent reduction in OTA commissions and 12 percent increase in direct bookings, according to the company. http://www.tambourine.com/ ** Expedia Unveils PartnerCentral, a Mobile App for Hoteliers Expedia Inc. has introduced the Expedia PartnerCentral App for iPhone® and Android. According to the company, the Expedia PartnerCentral app experience is designed to provide Expedia hotel partners with easy-to-use tools and actionable insights at their fingertips. The app enables hoteliers to stay on top of reservations with up-to-the-minute booking information and notifications; receive real-time alerts and insights on events taking place in their markets with the new activity feed; view and reply to guests in real time during their visit; stay informed 24/7 by using seamless fingerprint login on devices that support Touch ID; create, optimize and renew promotions or join Expedia Group campaigns to target and attract travelers; benchmark performance against the competition using MarketWatch; and quickly promote last-minute inventory with Sell Tonight. The app will provide business-to-business services for hotel partners to use as a tool for inventory tracking and rate management as well. http://www.expedia.com/ **
- Amway Grand Relies on Digital Alchemy to Strengthen Guest Relationships -------------------------- Amway Grand Relies on Digital Alchemy to Strengthen Guest Relationships Digital Alchemy enters its sixth year of partnership with Amway Grand. Digital Alchemy’s suite boosts guest relations by utilizing their personalized guest communication and email marketing, delivering instant revenue statistics. http://www.digital-alchemy.com/ **
- Rainmaker Rated a Champion in Info-Tech Research Group’s Revenue Management Systems Vendor Landscape - Duetto to Provide Revenue Strategy Solutions for Trump Hotel Collection -------------------------- Rainmaker Rated a Champion in Info-Tech Research Group’s Revenue Management Systems Vendor Landscape Info-Tech Research Group recently named Rainmaker an exemplary performer in the gaming/hospitality industry, calling its GuestREV revenue management solution “a leading RMS player.” This acknowledgement was a product of Info-Tech Research Group’s Vendor Landscape report on revenue management systems which recognizes outstanding vendors in the technology marketplace. The study evaluated eight revenue management system providers who were selected as being reputable companies among mid to large size hotel operations. http://www.letitrain.com ** Duetto to Provide Revenue Strategy Solutions for Trump Hotel Collection Duetto announced that it will implement its revenue strategy solutions for Trump Hotel Collection, bringing new insights on pricing and demand to the luxury hotel collection, known for its unmatched standard of excellence, personalized service and prime locations worldwide. Duetto will launch its services in nine sought-after destinations, encompassing more than 3,000 rooms worldwide. The rollout will begin with the 391-room Trump SoHo New York, and will continue at Trump properties in Chicago, Honolulu, Las Vegas, Miami, Panama, Canada and Ireland. http://duettoresearch.com/ **
SALES & CATERING, MEETING PLANNING
- Groupize Launches SGM: Strategic Group Management Solutions for Third-party Travel Providers -------------------------- Groupize Launches SGM: Strategic Group Management Solutions for Third-party Travel Providers Groupize, an award-winning innovator in small group and meeting technology, announced Strategic Group Management Solutions for third parties. The Groupize SGM, Small Group and Meeting Booking Engine, is one of the first strategic solutions for enterprises and third parties to source, book and manage multiroom bookings, extended stays, small group bookings and all requirements for small meetings in one easy-to-use application. http://groupizesolutions.com/ **
F&B/POINT OF SALE
- Agilysys Recognized as Champion in Info-Tech Food & Beverage POS Solution Vendor Landscape Report - The Jefferson Hotel Selects Agilysys POS Solutions to Streamline Food & Beverage, Retail Operations - Shift4’s VT4 Mobile Point-of-sale Solution Enables Secure Transactions Anywhere, Anytime --------------------------
- Demand for In-room Video Content Declining as the Number of Guests Streaming Their Own Content Rises - The Shaner Group Automates Guest Feedback with UniFocus - Everything Hotels Need to Know about Virtual Reality Marketing - AccorHotels Partners with TrustYou to Power Its Voice of the Guest Program --------------------------
- Verizon is First U.S. Wireless Company to Offer Roaming in Cuba -------------------------- Verizon is First U.S. Wireless Company to Offer Roaming in Cuba It’s been about one month since the United States officially reopened its embassy in Cuba. Starting next week, Verizon Wireless customers who travel internationally can connect easily – including talk, messaging and data – while in the Caribbean’s largest nation, through the company’s Pay-As-You-Go International Travel option. http://www.verizonwireless.com/ **
- Early Adopters of Keyless Entry Programs Claim Process has Been Largely Painless - Hilton Investigating Claims of Hackers Compromising Registers at Gift Shops and Restaurants Across the United States - Security Breaches to Become Costlier for Victim Companies with New Liability Rules in Effect in the United States --------------------------
- Sustainability Benchmarking Call for Participation Opens - Caesars Entertainment Introduces Energy Efficiency Upgrades - AirRevive Refurbishes Guestroom Air Conditioning Units at Chicago Marriott Suites Downers Grove --------------------------
- HFTP to Hold HITEC in Canada for the First Time - HX: The Hotel Experience Significantly Expands Technology Offerings for Its 2015 Event -------------------------- HFTP to Hold HITEC in Canada for the First Time HFTP announced the HITEC Conference will be held for the first time in Toronto, Canada, June 26-29, 2017. HITEC is a trade show showcasing the latest products and services and is led by industry peers and experts offering top-notch technology hospitality education. http://www.hftp.org/ ** HX: The Hotel Experience Significantly Expands Technology Offerings for Its 2015 Event HX: The Hotel Experience 2015 Show will be held November 8-10, 2015, at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York City, and will expand technology offerings for attendees. The most noticeable addition is the 1,100-square-foot hub for attendees to experience new products and hear ideas, as well as a TECHbar for app questions and answers. http://www.thehotelexperience.us/ **
PIQUED DAN'S INTEREST
- Why Hotels Should Apply Big Data Analytics To Provide a Unique Guest Experience - A Practical Guide to Big Data for Hotels - Can a Single View of Your Customer Be a Bad Thing? - How Hotels Are Catering to Business Travelers in Emerging Tech Cities - Travelers Predict Future of Travel: Face Recognition Technology, Hologram Personal Trainers & More - And more stories… --------------------------
LATEST HOTEL and HOSPITALITY TECHNOLOGY NEWS and TRENDS
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