World Panel
Viewpoint10 October 2019

Why are there so many hospitality technology vendors in our industry? (Part I)

Digital Marketing in Hospitality

— 12 experts shared their view

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This viewpoint was created by
Max Starkov, Adjunct Professor NYU Tisch Center for Hospitality and Hospitality & Online Travel Tech Consultant
Mark Fancourt
Co-Founder at TRAVHOTECH

There are so many vendors in the industry for a number of reasons - Travel & Hospitality are 'it' Industries with high visibility at the moment; there is a wealth of speculative capital; technology development has become swifter through modern tools and platforms; the industry is perceived as ready for disruption; there remain many operational functions that are yet to be technology enabled; perhaps the industry wants something different......?

Now for the questions.

1. Yes, there are number of solutions that go well beyond the range in the question to encompass almost the entire hospitality operation.

2. Yes, it is. There will always be some parts of the operation/technology that will sit outside of this model. Revenue Management is a good example as it will receive input from so many other systems in the future. However, the rest of the operation has proven to be a good candidate. This is because when the hospitality operation is viewed in this context it is found that process and inputs are similar across the business. This is why a single platform is viable.

In my view the term 'specialist hotel technology vendor' is loose. Given the right resources and commitment it's realistic to be strong at multiple disciplines. If through the acquisition of multiple disparate companies/products a vendor becomes 'strong' and celebrated why would it not be the case that through integrated technology you can also become strong? Is the cut and thrust of mergers and takeovers more interesting than big picture industry technology solutions? It appears to be the case in media dialogue and pundit world.

3. We've seen it and it is alive in the industry. Nothing new here.

Having direct experience on this topic as an operator and a vendor to industry, it is not as much about the technology as it is about the organisational drive and courage to make such a major shift in business process. When the commitment is made and the step is taken the rewards are huge. Not achievable through any other mix and match of multi vendor solutions. But you can only appreciate that if you've walked the road. Few have. 

This will be the eventual way the industry runs as a standard because it is the only approach that addresses the real business pressures of industry. Perceived technology pressures that many like to cite are secondary concerns.

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