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With the news cycle laser-focused on the looming threat of a COVID-19 second wave happening in nearly every territory, it is up to each and every hotel to ensure we are all fully compliant with virus safety guidelines in order to restore group booking confidence. And the only way to ensure compliance with these safety guidelines is through contactless and compliance technologies to give guests a strong guarantee of proper sanitization as well as peace of mind.

A great deal has been written over the years about the viability of moving a hotel’s property-management system (PMS) to the cloud to take advantage of the latest technologies, but hoteliers need to realize that it’s not the only viable option. All platforms have advantages, including self-hosted, private cloud and on-premise solutions that leverage the latest mobile, contact free and web-based technologies. Independent operators can still enhance the digital guest experience, support personalized and mobile check-in, deploy contact free technologies, and secure hotel/guest data even if their PMS does not reside in the cloud. It should not be a question of “Cloud or On Premise?” but rather “Does the PMS solve your business objectives in both technology and service?”

Much has been written in the mainstream hospitality press about the challenges COVID-19 has presented to the industry. Hotels are in more pain than at any time in our memories. Because of the extensive media coverage, I won’t dwell on this topic further in what is primarily a technology column. But it’s the background for this week’s column, and so merits acknowledgement.

Are You All In?
Posted: 07/27/2020

Imagine everyone in your organization engaged, aligned, and performing to their potential. Imagine everyone playing “All In.”

Great organizations have synergy. Their culture allows them to play to a rhythm at a different tempo than the average organization. How do you get that at your organization?

Many front-line hospitality workers rely on tips for a significant part of their paychecks. If not for tips, many hotel associates who serve as waitstaff, bartenders, housekeepers, bell staff, concierges and pool attendants would soon be looking for other jobs. This is a regional issue: in most of Asia and Europe, staff get higher base pay, and tips are either not expected at all, or are truly discretionary. But in the U.S., Canada, Britain and other countries, tips are an important reality, and one that’s not likely to change anytime soon.



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Pegasus Solutions Electronic Distribution Becomes DHISCO

01/12/2015
by John Burns

The distribution division of Pegasus Solutions, now renamed DHISCO (an acronym for the Distribution Hospitality Intelligent Systems Company) will now operate as a stand-alone hotel distribution services company following its acquisition by H.I.G. Capital. Official announcement of the acquisition and rebranding will take place at the HEDNA (Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association) Winter Conference in Long Beach, Calif., Jan. 13-15, 2015. 

In announcing DHISCO, H.I.G. Capital confirmed that the company will be led by Toni Portmann who has assumes the roles of CEO and executive chairman.  Ms. Portman has previously managed other high-tech companies, including organizations in which H.I.G. Capital has an investment interest. H.I.G. Capital is a global private equity investment firm with over $17 billion of total capital under management.  

DHISCO processes over eight billion accommodation shopping transactions monthly, in doing so serving 300+ hotel chains in over 200 countries, together offering over 100,000 hotels worldwide. 

DHISCO announced retention of several key, long-time senior staff including John Owens to lead the sales organization, Lynn Malouf to manage client relations, Craig Barnaby to head up product development and Mel Kemp to direct IT.

The DHISCO name is reminiscent of the organization whose technology and activities DHISCO now administers, THISCO, an acronym for The Hotel Industry Switch Company. THISCO was established in 1989 by 17 leading hotel companies with the mandate to provide electronic connectivity between hotel company central reservation systems and the then five global distribution systems. The connectivity platform was christened UltraSwitch. 

In the years following its founding, THISCO (later branded as Pegasus Systems and then Pegasus Solutions) developed several widely used services in addition to UltraSwitch.  These included reservation representation services using first the RezView CRS developed by Anasazi, Inc. (which Pegasus acquired in 2001) and later the RezView Next Generation CRS.  They also included sales and reservation services from Utell International, travel agency commission payment (by Hotel Clearing Corporation, later Pegasus Financial Services), content management, data caching and connectivity to online travel agencies and numerous online hotel booking websites.
 
This is the second acquisition of a Pegasus Solutions division by H.I.G Capital. In April 2013, the private equity firm assumed ownership of Pegasus Financial Services, later renamed Onyx Payments. 

Pegasus Solution was owned since 2005 by the Boston-based private equity firm Prides Capital who initiated its disaggregation in April 2013 with sale of its travel agency commission processing division, Pegasus Financial Services to H.I.G. Capital. The reservation services division was sold in October 2014, to Regent Equity Partners and the divestment was completed in November 2014, with H.I.G. Capital’s acquisition of the distribution division. 

H.I.G. Capital has committed to provide financial backing to DHISCO to enable it to enhance and evolve its hospitality distribution capabilities. This intention will be welcomed by the lodging industry, for which extensive, highly-reliable connectivity with GDSs, OTA, search engines and booking web sites has become a high strategic priority. 

After considerable speculation within the global lodging industry about the future of Pegasus Solutions and its services, this asset redistribution may bring greater confidence in those services’ continuing availability. As DHISCO works to decouple itself for the reservation services division of Pegasus Solutions (which retains the Pegasus brand name) and the chart and articulate its plans to develop and deploy new or revitalized distribution solutions, it will find the lodging community eagerly watching its activities.

About The Author
John Burns
President
Hospitality Technology Consulting


John Burns is the president of Hospitality Technology Consulting. He can be reached at John@burns-htc.com.

 
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