News for the Hospitality Executive
September 25, 2012 - A company which has wrapped rocket science up in a calculator interface won the day at this year’s EyeforTravel Travel Distribution Summit in North America. Pamela Whitby catches up iRates after the event to hear its next steps.
In the highly competitive, rapidly changing travel business where savvy consumers have far more choice and hotels are operating in a tough economic climate, it is perhaps a sign of the times that this year’s winner of the EyeforTravel innovator award is a revenue management tool. Judged by a panel of industry experts, iRates, the revenue management solution for small to mid-tier hospitality firms, was up against four other innovators – three of which were trip-planning tools of a kind.
But it was a tool for revenue management - an increasingly important part of a hotel’s business – that won day. The company’s chief executive, Vadim Asadov, says quite often iRates’ the target audience, namely small to mid-tier hotels, do not have the resources (financial or human) to invest in a complex RM system. Many of these hotels are working under the pressure of rapidly changing demand as a result of increasingly savvy and demanding customers who have a whole range of tools - aggregators, recommendation sites, mobile apps and so on - which enable them to find the best price available. The company says its programme is perfect for this group because it is simple to use with a ready-to-go interface and inexpensive implementation process. It is so simple that Asadov says a five-year-old child could run it. “It’s rocket science wrapped into a calculator interface,” he says.
According to iRates’ vice-president of business development, Ira Vouk, just 30 minutes of remote training is enough to learn how to use the system and will lead to an immediate improvement of a property’s RevPAR. An average three-star hotel saw a 42% increase in RevPAR, almost 30% higher than the comparable period, after using the system, which led to $60,000 in additional monthly revenue.
That sounds like good news but what are the next steps for the firm?
Buoyed up by the networking opportunity at TDS North America, which Asadov says offered the “perfect combination of the right people, industry expertise and abilities,” the company will now be following up leads. Says Vouk: “The summit was very useful from a strategic point of view. We met many people from different companies that we can develop mutually beneficial partnerships with.”
The revenue management company targets its system at small to mid-tier hospitality firms, introduced its product last year in the United States and now plans to grow its market around the world." Asadov says the plan now is to focus on three major areas:
Winning the EyeforTravel innovator award may make that road a little less bumpy.
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EyeforTravel is a leading business intelligence provider for the online travel and tourism industry. As well as providing some of the most in-depth research into global online travel markets and trends, EyeforTravel produces a series of senior executive travel conferences on a diverse range of topics including travel distribution, online marketing, social media, mobile and revenue management. For more information visit www.eyefortravel.com.
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