Siegel Sez

September 24, 2021

Siegel Sez

In this wacky world we are living in it is nice when we experience some sort of normalcy. Two weeks ago, we had our 19th CIO Summit and we had more than 50 technology leaders from the hotel industry join us in Atlanta. I have included a unique short video that shows some serious and a lot of not so serious moments that will hopefully make you laugh. It was a great event, but the one thing that really made us proud was the feedback on the program. From cybersecurity to the economic and supply factors affecting hotel performances, the program was wide ranging and concluded with our annual roundtable, that I wish everyone could experience. It is a no-holds-barred discussion among the attendees. It really was an amazing event and I encourage you to take the two minutes and watch the CIO Summit video here.
After the CIO Summit in Atlanta, it was a trip to Cape Canaveral, Fla., to see the Inspiration4 launch. I had never seen a rocket ship launch live before. All I can say is, that everyone should put that experience on their bucket list. Liz did a great job creating a short video of the happening. Thanks to Shift4 for inviting me. What an amazing experience! Here is the Inspiration4 video. You might rethink how billionaires spend their money for something good.
Now the real test of normalcy happens. Next week Hospitality Upgrade and Hotel Online are off to Dallas for HITEC and HSMAI ROC. The conversations we have been having go all over the place — what will it be like? Attendance will be off, but considering the state of the industry will it be positive? The buzz leading up to next week has been very positive, and if you look at the program schedule, I would say it is topnotch. There are great speakers and the vendor support in the exhibit hall is amazing. This should be an interesting week and since masks are an absolute, I wonder how that will go over. I know I will be wearing mine. If you are at HITEC, please come by the booth and say hello. We’ll be in booth 3505. There is still time to register for HITEC and the HITEC app is a great resource. You can download it here.
We’ll also cover the Revenue Optimization Conference (ROC) at the Omni Hotel next week. We congratulate HU contributor, Cindy Estis Green, CEO and cofounder of Kalibri Labs, for her recognition as this year’s HSMAI Vanguard Award for Achievement in Revenue Optimization. Look for our Hospitality Upgrade and Hotel Online team next week!
Of course, how I approach the events next week and how Doug Rice does, are a bit different. In this week’s Definitely Doug column he shares how you might rethink your approach to the exhibit hall at HITEC. Remember, not all the little guys stay little. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. If you are not going to be in Dallas, HFTP has created HITEC TV where I was asked to do some interviews while there. Who knows, that might be a decision they regret. Then again, sometimes normalcy can be overrated. Hope to see many of you next week in Dallas. HITEC here we come!

Definitely Doug

On the Lookout for Innovation at HITEC

After 27 months of absence, the in-person HITEC event finally returns next week. I plan to be in Dallas for all four days, and I look forward to seeing what innovations the exhibitors will have on display. As usual, I will spend most of my time scouring the booths of first-time exhibitors, since that’s where most of the truly innovative ideas are usually found. But if you’re an established industry technology company with something that is truly new and different, please reach out to me so I can find time to see it as well!

Most hoteliers who attend HITEC have some specific objectives in mind, based on projects they have planned or are contemplating for the coming year. This is entirely appropriate, but I hope they will also spend some time looking at the companies they have never seen before, even if just for a few seconds to see if what they do is relevant or interesting. After all, the established vendors already know how to reach you and tell you what they’re doing; neither you nor they need HITEC for that. But finding the new ones who may have great ideas that could solve some of your challenges requires that you spend some time looking for them. In my experience, HITEC is the best place to do that.

There has been much speculation about how big the show will be this year. Budgets are tight, travel restrictions are still in place at many companies, and for those based outside the U.S., travel is somewhere between challenging and impossible. Even some domestic attendees with family risk factors are nervous about traveling and mixing with crowds. Offsetting this, the HFTP Annual Convention and the HSMAI Marketing Strategy Conference are co-locating with HITEC for the first time, which should draw some additional attendance.

Exhibit floor bookings, which are published on the HFTP website, yield some clues. I have been watching them closely over recent weeks and speaking with companies who are exhibiting, as well as with some who have decided to sit this year out. One week out, I counted 249 booths reserved, which is down roughly 35% to 40% from pre-COVID levels but still respectable. Many regular exhibitors who are based overseas are missing, while others are present but have downsized substantially. Toronto-based Maestro PMS announced this week that it will attend virtually but maintain its booth for remote demo scheduling, as well as mobile device charging and refreshments for attendees. About 5% of the booth space was still available less than two weeks out, and that was after nearly 40 10x10 booths in the back and far right were axed from the floor plan.

Click here to read more of Doug’s column on On the Lookout for Innovation at HITEC

Douglas Rice
Twitter: @dougrice
On the Lookout for Innovation at HITEC


- UniFocus Expands Its Workforce Management Capabilities with Acquisition of Knowcross
Industry-leading innovator of Labor Management technology extends its integrated platform with the addition of task management to boost operational performance.


- Jonas Chorum Appoints Jake Lewis as New President
Jonas Chorum is excited to announce the appointment of Jake Lewis as President of Jonas Chorum. Our previous President, Mark Loyd, has been promoted to CEO of Jonas Chorum.

- Quore Announces Leadership Promotions
Quore, a leading hospitality-technology company, today announced the promotions of three senior leaders within the organization - Scott Barber, Richard Bradbury, and Flip Lukens. This is part of Quore’s growth strategy to cultivate internal talent and strengthen the long-term flexibility of their product.

- Cloud5 Welcomes Industry Veteran David Heckaman to Their Executive Leadership Team
Cloud5 Communications, the leading provider of technology and communications solutions for the world’s top hotel brands and management companies, today announced that hospitality veteran David Heckaman has joined Cloud5’s Executive Leadership Team as Vice President of Product Development.


Agilysys To Showcase Latest InfoGenesis Point of Sale Innovations With IG 12UX At HITEC Dallas 2021
- Cloudbeds Returns to HITEC
- Visual Matrix Celebrates Hospitality's Recovery by Showcasing Latest Advances in Hotel PMS Technology at HITEC 2021
- Silver Sponsor Maestro PMS Attends HITEC Virtually; Remodels Its Booth to Serve as a Demo Scheduling, Mobile Device Charging, and Refreshment Hub
- StayNTouch Joins HITEC Dallas with Guest-Centric PMS Technology Showcase and a Lively Happy Hour
- Maestro PMS Helping Prepare Hoteliers Attending HITEC Hospitality Technology Conference in Dallas


For more information on Guest Management Systems for 9/24/2021


IDeaS and Amadeus Expand Technology Partnership to Expedite Hospitality Industry Recovery
- ProfitSword and Duetto Partner to Provide Hotels with Latest in Time-Saving Revenue and Performance Forecasting Accuracy
- OTA Insight and PredictHQ Partner for Smarter Demand Forecasting as Hoteliers Prepare for Rebound
- Settlers Hospitality Chooses IDeaS' Industry-Leading Revenue Management Solutions and Services
- OTA Insight Showcases How Predictive Market Intelligence and Advanced Rate Strategies Are Key to Hotel Recovery at HITEC 2021
- Brera Serviced Apartments Partners with IDeaS Revenue Solutions to Enhance Growth Strategy

For more information on Revenue Management & Analytics for 9/24/2021


- Crave Interactive Launch Next Generation Of In-Room Tablet Range For Luxury Hotels And Resorts
Crave Interactive, a leading global hospitality technology company, today announce the launch of its next generation T3 range of in-room hotel tablets and docks.

- Hard Rock Has Chosen Nonius as their Preferred Partner for TV and Cast Solutions
The hotel chain, which is synonymous with music, entertainment and customized experience, trusted our technology to provide their guests with bespoke in-room entertainment.


- GCommerce Adds Google Analytics 4 Reporting Product to Its Hospitality Digital Marketing Offering
Google Analytics 4 will be a vital component of any business’s marketing foundation in a cookieless world.

- The Ultimate Guide to Hotel CRM & E-Mail Marketing Software
Hotel Tech Report launched the “Official Hotel CRM & E-Mail Marketing Software Guide 2022” featuring dailypoint™. The guide is now available free of charge to the entire hotel community, for which – gearing up for the post-COVID hospitality boom – competition will be fierce and new avenues need to be explored.

- Zoox Smart Data to Showcase Advanced Innovations in Big Data and Artificial Intelligence Technology at HITEC 2021
Zoox Smart Data, an international provider of technological solutions that harnesses big data to build customer profiles from existing Wi-Fi networks, is set to exhibit its latest technological innovations at HITEC 2021 in Dallas, Texas.


- Knowland and Amadeus Partner to Provide Industry-Leading Meetings and Events Insights
Trusted partners come together to help hotels gain efficiencies, deeper event insights, and prepare for the return of group business.

- Mid-Continent Hospitality Selects STS Cloud to Increase Revenue and Efficiency Across Fast-Growing Multi-Brand Portfolio
Leading hotel development and management integrates sales for Marriott, Hilton, IHG and independents on STS Cloud System from


- ProfitSword Inspires Hotelier Success with Empowering Insights into Business Intelligence Technology Trends during HITEC Dallas 2021
Hospitality’s leading business intelligence innovator to showcase how hoteliers can leverage new advancements to ensure the success of recovery efforts and maintain profitability.

- Hospitality Back Office and Accounting Leader PAS Announces it is Successfully Deploying in the Infor Cloud
Professional Accounting Solutions (PAS) announced it is successfully deploying its solutions in the Infor cloud and looks forward to meeting with many of its hotel clients at HITEC Dallas 2021.


- Hotel Internet Services Demonstrates the Latest Guest Connectivity, Personalization and Contactless Service Trends That Are Key to Hotel Recovery at HITEC 2021
Hospitality’s leading provider of Wi-Fi and IoT-based technology to showcase how hoteliers can simultaneously and affordably meet guest expectations for High-speed internet, customized in-room entertainment and germ-free service.

- Cloud5 Communications Set to Showcase Managed IT Services, Virtual Guest Services, Conference Services, and Guest Engagement Solutions at HITEC 2021
Cloud5 Communications, a leading provider of communications solutions and Managed IT Services for the world’s top hotel brands and management companies, is set to exhibit at HITEC 2021. Cloud5 will showcase the company’s well-known Internet and voice solutions, as well as a new suite of services designed to maximize hotel resources, reduce costs, drive new revenue streams, and engage guests like never before.

- The Barfield Partners with HIS to Deliver Seamless Guest Connectivity
Hotel Internet Services (HIS), a full-service provider of internet services and solutions for the hospitality industry, has announced the implementation of a high-speed Guest Wi-Fi service for The Barfield, an Autograph Collection hotel.


- The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort Implements Agilysys SaaS Solutions to Improve Operations & Enhance the Guest Experience
Agilysys, Inc., a leading global provider of next-generation cloud-native SaaS and on-premise hospitality software solutions and services, today announced that The King and Prince Beach & Golf Resort on St. Simons Island, GA has implemented the award-winning innovative InfoGenesis POS solution as well as its modern cloud-native SaaS Agilysys Pay secure payment processing solution.

- JW Marriott Tampa Installs a Food Inventory Control System Provided by Clear Sky Software
Clear Sky Software, Inc.® announced today that The JW Marriott Tampa Water Street in Tampa, Florida, has installed Clear Sky’s food inventory management system, called Clear Sky FOOD, for control and management of the hotel’s food products inventory.


- Onyx CenterSource Develops Payment Platform for's Travel Agency Affiliates
New platform will enable travel agencies to easily and securely receive payments for their revenue share of completed stays booked through the platform.


- UniFocus to Showcase How Hoteliers Can Unleash the True Potential of Workforce Management Efficiency at the Lodging Conference
Leading innovator of labor and task optimization technology demonstrates the four key pillars required to achieve effective shift coverage and high-quality service while maximizing staff loyalty and hotel revenues.


- Shiji’s AWS Competency: Pioneering Data Security for Hotel Technology
- React Mobile Integration with Amadeus’ HotSOS Housekeeping Is Improving Effectiveness of Employee Safety Devices
- Elevating the Guest Experience: Onity to Showcase Mobile Access Solutions, Integrations Capabilities and New Serene Luxury Lock at HITEC
- AJS Hotels Picks VENZA for Data Protection and PCI DSS Compliance
- IHG Hotels & Resorts Selects TraknProtect as an Approved Provider of Staff Safety and Location-based Technology
- The Westin Fort Lauderdale Selects ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions to Implement Advanced Staff Safety and Hotel Asset Management Features

For more information on Security for 9/24/2021


- AAHOA Names Ken Greene as President & CEO
Following a unanimous vote by the AAHOA Board of Directors, Ken Greene is the new President & CEO. Greene has been serving in that role on an interim basis since June.


- Expedia Group Shares Fall Travel Outlook
Despite uncertainty, the majority of Americans (58%) plan to travel sometime September through November.

- Knowland Reports U.S. Meetings and Events Volume Growth of 25.5 Percent for August 2021
Knowland, the world’s leading provider of data-as-a-service insights on meetings and events for hospitality, today released monthly meetings and events data for August. The numbers reveal that August U.S. group meetings volume increased 25.5 percent over July 2021.


- Upselling Gets a Tech Makeover
- 4 Ways Technology Makes Training Fun and Games
- How I Hacked a Hotel Just Using My Phone
- Traveling on Business? Get Ready for Absurd New Hotel Fees

For more information on Piqued Our Interest for 9/24/2021


And now for you-know-what.…

Jesus and the Devil are arguing over which one of them is the better computer programmer. “I am.” Jesus says with serene calm.
“No, I am!” the Devil shrieks in that other-worldly way of his. “I am!” “I am!” “Me!”
“EEEEEEENOUGH!” God bellows, as the whole universe momentarily falls into darkness.
When the lights come back on, two computers are sitting in front of them. “Now,” God says, “whoever makes the best computer program in twenty minutes wins.”
Jesus and the Devil both sit down, typing and clicking furiously. This goes on for about 15 minutes, but when there is another brief black-out – for God is peeved when an atheist somehow wins a Gold Medal at the Olympics without him – everything goes dark again. When everything comes back up again, the computer screens are both blank.
The Devil tries in vain to get back everything he has lost, but comes up empty-handed. Jesus pressed one key and it all comes back. The Devil looks at him in astonishment. “No way! How did you do that?!”
Jesus turns to him, smiling beatifically, and says, “Everybody knows Jesus saves.”

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