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Austin, Texas, USA (September 17, 2014) - This week Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) opened the HFTP Asia Research Center in collaboration with the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU). The purpose of the new office is to expand HFTP's presence in the region by providing further education and professional development to hospitality practitioners in Asia. To facilitate this initiative HFTP has donated $100,000 USD and will establish a student exchange scholarship, a faculty research development fund and an applied research fund.

"Hong Kong Polytechnic University is not only one of the world's leading universities, but also has one of the world's greatest hotels, recently recognized by Trip Advisor as the best hotel in Asia." said Frank Wolfe, CAE, CEO of HFTP. "PolyU and HFTP teaming together will create an incredible synergy that will contribute to academia and industry advancement."

"We are proud to have been associated with HFTP and we shall continue to do so," said Kaye Chon, professor and dean of the SHTM at PolyU . "The recent benefaction of the organization has provided a strong boost for the PolyU to make further advancement."

The opening of this office, in addition to the previously chartered HFTP student chapter at PolyU, is part of HFTP's strategic initiative to expand globally and to support the vital growth of hospitality technology and finance professionals in Asia. This office will allow students to benefit from cultural immersion and support faculty in developing new teaching methods. The research conducted will ultimately assist and advance the entire industry. 

The HFTP Asia Research Office will also produce one of HFTP's top member benefits, itsProLinks webinars, during local business hours. The webinars cover numerous industry-related topics presented by expert speakers, and conducting the sessions during times convenient to the professionals in the region gives them the opportunity to participate in sessions, which are interactive when one tunes in to a live broadcast. This benefit is offered at no cost to HFTP members and at a minimal fee for nonmembers.

Sunny Wang, will staff the HFTP Asia Research Office under the guidance of Dean Chon. Wang is a recent honors graduate of PolyU and is multilingual, fluent in English, Cantonese, Mandarin and has a working knowledge of Japanese. She was actively involved in the development of HFTP's Global Hospitality Accounting Common Practices resource and served as vice president of the HFTP Hong Kong Polytechnic University Student Chapter prior to graduation. Wang also attended the University of Central Florida as a cultural exchange student.

The HFTP Asia Research Center is located within the SHTM of PolyU at 17 Science Museum Road, TST East, Kowloon, Hong Kong. Wang can be reached at sunny.wang@hftp.org, by phone at +1 (512) 220-4039 or by Skype at HFTP.Asia. 

In addition to the new HFTP Asia Research Center, HFTP also runs the HFTP Research Instituteat the Conrad N. Hilton College at the University of Houston, established in January 2000. The Research Institute is charged with specialty research on topics of specific interest to HFTP members, as well as routine research by request from HFTP members, a free member benefit.

About PolyU's School of Hotel and Tourism Management

PolyU's School of Hotel and Tourism Management is a world-leading provider of hospitality and tourism education. It was ranked No. 2 internationally among hotel and tourism schools based on research and scholarship, according to a study published in the Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research in November 2009. With 65 academic staff drawing from 20 countries and regions, the School offers programmes at levels ranging from Higher Diploma to Ph.D. Currently a member of the UNWTO Knowledge Network, the School was bestowed the McCool Breakthrough Award in 2012 by the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (I-CHRIE) recognising its breakthrough in the form of its teaching and research hotel - Hotel ICON - the heart of the School's innovative approach to hospitality and tourism education. 

About HFTP

HFTP, Austin, Texas, USA and Maastricht, The Netherlands, founded in 1952, is the global professional association for financial and technology personnel working in hotels, clubs and other hospitality-related businesses. HFTP provides first class educational opportunities, research, and publications to members around the globe including, the premiere hospitality technology conference HITEC--founded in 1972. HFTP also awards the only hospitality specific certifications for accounting and technology --the Certified Hospitality Accountant Executive (CHAE) and the Certified Hospitality Technology Professional (CHTP) designations. HFTP was founded in the USA as the National Association of Hotel Accountants. For more information, visit www.hftp.org.

Contact: Sara Shafer, Public Relations Manager

Sara.Shafer@hftp.org / +1 (512) 220-4017

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