Industry Update
Press Release29 April 2020

Bench Events announces first speakers for second episode of Hospitality Tomorrow, the world’s first fully virtual global hospitality conference

The programme of the second edition of Hospitality Tomorrow will follow the sun and take delegates on a virtual journey across five key markets around the globe

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Hospitality Tomorrow

Following the successful launch of Hospitality Tomorrow, the company's first virtual conference that took place earlier this month and attracted 5,343 hospitality decision-makers from 128 countries, Bench Events has announced the first 30+ speakers for the second edition of Hospitality Tomorrow, set to take place on 12 May, 2020.

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Powered by Bench Digital, Hospitality Tomorrow was launched to support the hard-hit international hospitality community during Covid-19, by offering a virtual conference platform that provides knowledge, facilitates information sharing and connects the industry.

Jonathan Worsley, Chairman of Bench Events, said: "Our goal for the last 25 years has been to bring the hospitality industry together around the world to network and to showcase best practice and thought leadership. Hospitality Tomorrow continues this journey and, as daunting as the challenge may seem, it's crucial that we rebuild confidence in the global community. Now is the time to continue the conversation and to make those critical connections to build relationships, unity and actionable ways to support one another for a stronger response - as one industry, one community for one tomorrow."

Virtually global, episode two of Hospitality Tomorrow ('HT2') will take place on Tuesday 12 May 2020. The interactive programme will follow the sun around the globe and is split into a focus on five key markets spanning the planet, starting at 06:00 GMT with a session on China and ending at 16:00 GMT with a focus on North America.

Anita Mendiratta, Special Advisor to the Secretary General of UNWTO, will be co-hosting the event with Jonathan Worsley. Ahead of the event she commented: "COVID-19 has connected the world through crisis. As discovered with Hospitality Tomorrow's first edition, leaders are determined to stand together - across the globe and value chain - to ensure rigorous examination of the challenges ahead so we are all ready to mobilise smart, sustainable solutions once our doors, borders and skies re-open. I am incredibly honoured to be a part of this remarkable, pioneering project, and excited to be part of our next edition as our global community reconnects on May 12th."

Back by popular demand, HardTalk presenter Stephan Sackur will be moderating several sessions of the interactive programme that will, amongst others, cover key topics including the influence of technology on the world during and post Covid-19, trends and reinventions that are set to transform the industry, the future in art and culture, as well as sustainability, hospitality investment and asset management in the new normal.

The programme will once again have a stellar line-up of global thought leaders, the full list of speakers please can be found here. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Puneet Chhatwal - Managing Director and CEO, Indian Hotels Company Limited
  • Jerry Inzerillo - Chief Executive Officer, Diriyah Gate Development Authority, KSA
  • Lindsey Ueberroth - CEO, Preferred Hotels & Resorts
  • K.B. Kachru - Chairman Emeritus & Principal Advisor South Asia, Radisson Hotel Group
  • Neeraj Govil - Senior Vice President for South Asia, Marriott International
  • Kate Nicholls - CEO, UKHospitality
  • Marcus-Milan Arandelovic - Hotel Division COO, Aroundtown SA
  • Wesley Paul - Founder & Executive Chairman, Gemin-i Analytics Ltd
  • Anders Nissen - CEO, Pandox AB
  • Priya Paul - Chairperson, Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels
  • Demian Hodari - Associate Professor of strategic management, Ecole Hôtelière Lausanne (EHL)
  • Isabel Hill - Director, National Travel and Tourism Office at the U.S. Department of Commerce

The immersive conference experience will feature nine hours of interactive content and essential industry insights by global speakers on the main 'live' stage and in break-out sessions and roundtables, as well as live face-to-face networking and a virtual Expo hosted by the event sponsors.

Through a voluntary registration contribution for the first edition of Hospitality Tomorrow, Bench Events was able to fund 16 hospitality workers' livelihoods through Springboard and will continue to allocate funds from the ticket sales of this event to help hospitality professionals impacted by the struggling sector.

"The Charitable Committee at Bench Events is very pleased to support Springboard to help their efforts of continuing to provide crucial support services to people from disadvantaged backgrounds during this difficult time. This fund was built through the voluntary registration fee for Hospitality Tomorrow, in which 50% was pledged to help those in need from our industry impacted from the COVID-19 pandemic. Springboard helps people of all ages, backgrounds and walks of life with barriers into employment to fall in love with hospitality, leisure and tourism, as well as to gain the skills, knowledge and experience needed to forge a career in these industries,"commented Worsley.

More information about the agenda, speakers and how to register can be found at www.HospitalityTomorrow.com.

About Springboard

Focussing on disadvantaged and young people, Springboard helps people of all ages and backgrounds, with barriers into employment, to fall in love with hospitality, leisure and tourism, as well as to gain the skills, knowledge and experience needed to forge a career in these industries.

Springboard is helping current trainees and recent graduates of their programmes who need ongoing support at this time, as well as potentially thousands more unemployed new starters over the next few weeks and months with Springboard's pioneering and award winning training. The training has been swiftly adapted in response to Covid-19 to be available online and there are already over 40 modules available, specifically tailored to give support during this challenging time, including skills training, resilience and wellbeing. Springboard are also delivering live and pre-recorded webinars, as well as giving 1:1 mentoring, advice and guidance by telephone, email and messaging. These people will be ready for employment in hospitality, leisure and tourism when businesses are eventually reopened.

To find out more about the Springboard Charity and their urgent appeal, as well as to make a donation or get in touch, visit www.springboard.uk.net/urgentplea.

Related Event

Webinar: Hospitality Tomorrow - Episode 2

event information

About Bench Events

Global event organiser Bench Events has a long track record of delivering multiple premium hotel investment conferences and forums across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Latin America. Market leading annual conferences include the Arabian Hotel Investment Conference (AHIC) in Dubai, now in its 13th year, the Africa Hotel Investment Forum (AHIF) the new Asia Hotel and Tourism Investment Conference (AHTIC), The Summit in London and the Latin American Hotel & Tourism Investment Conferences (SAHIC). Bench Events" extensive portfolio also includes the Global Restaurant Investment Forum (GRIF) in Dubai and AviaDev, designed to promote the future air connectivity in Africa. Bench Events" mission is enabling prosperity by facilitating growth, networking, and thought leadership in the hospitality industry worldwide. www.benchevents.com.

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