Driving complexity out of hotel distribution

Jeff Edwards

Amadeus Global Hotels Group

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In Madrid last week, we held the Amadeus Hotel Distribution Forum 2012 that brought together hoteliers from all regions across the globe to discuss the future of hotel distribution. The event was a great opportunity to debate the big issues shaping the industry. It was also an opportunity to outline our commitment to supporting the industry to maximise revenues through innovative partnership opportunities and to grow and expand into new geographic and demographic markets.

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The hotel industry is at an exciting cross-roads. There is significant potential for expansion due to the impact of new and emerging markets and the continued growth of the global travel sector. Nonetheless, at the same time there is increasing complexity for both hoteliers and sellers alike due to channel fragmentation and diversity.

A major theme throughout the conference was how hoteliers can manage this complexity and continue to drive value from all parts of the travel chain. At Amadeus, we are in a unique position of having visibility of the hotelier, seller and guest. Together, with our customers, we are committed to simplifying and optimising the hotel distribution process. There is a real opportunity for increased collaboration between us and the suppliers and sellers of hotel content to forge better and more productive ways of working that benefit all players.

With the impact of new social media channels, new markets, new channels and new guest segments emerging, it is clear that business agility and creative thinking will be key to success in the competitive hospitality sector. Our role is to support our hotel clients by delivering the technology, expertise and reach which will allow them to effectively merchandise, market and sell their product; and give travel sellers access to the range and variety of content that guests demand.

Through Amadeus' broad range of IT solutions and services for the Hotel Industry (CRS, PMS, RMS, Content Management, Distribution Channel Hub, e-Commerce, Web Services, Social Media, Mobile) we have a deep understanding of how systems need to operate in the new world of ever increasing complexity and sophisticated distribution channels.  By aligning our booking partners more closely with the hotel suppliers, we believe we can unlock significant additional value to both sides of the transaction and improve the bottom line of their business.

At the Forum, we identified a range of key areas where we must work together with our customers. We want to move beyond the customer/supplier relationship to true partnership. Our belief is that developing a sort of ‘innovation lab’ in the real world will help to challenge established thinking and test new ways of working that will spark breakthrough ideas. By taking this approach to the curation of ideas we hope to help drive the continued evolution and growth of the global hospitality sector.

I look forward to working closely with our hotel customers to help them to unlock the potential of their businesses, wherever the future takes them.