s p e c i a l s u p p l e m e n t : h o s i / h i c s a c o n f e r e n c e , m u m b a i 6 t h a p r i l 2 0 1 7 ajit kerkar revisits his success saga with fellow hoteliers and admirers it was a wave of mixed human emo- tions. recalling a saga of success, legendary among indian hotels, un- likely to be ever lived again. lifetime achievement award for ajit kerkar who left the taj group some 20 years ago. emo- tions of nostalgia, landmark events which saw opening of destinations, in fact, the opening of destination india to the world. we bring you a few excerpts which cap- ture the essence of last evening. • if i was born again i would like to work again for the tatas. (to a loud applause). •forallmysuccess,imustthankirst and foremost my colleague and wife, elizabeth. and my wonderful colleagues like camelia panjabi, pankaj baliga and so many others. •onrakeshsarna,(hissuccessor today):heisawarmpersonwitharightit for the taj culture. •onthetajgroupforayintogoa:iwas born in goa and my parents are goan. at the airport i met the then cm on my way to chennai. he took me around personally to survey some 80 properties and allowed me tochoosethefortaguadaforourirsthotel. •onhisoneadvicetofellowhoteliers, a question that he found tricky to answer: be sincere in your work and continue your hard work and success will follow. •withsomuchcompetitiontoday, would they be able to develop in the same manner as he did in his days: it has all changed and it can’t happen the same way again. but human innovation and ingenuitywillinditsway. hicsa awards presented by makemytrip luxury/upper upscale resorts segment: the oberoi sukhvilas resort & spa, new chandigarh luxury/upper upscale hotels segment: taj santacruz mumbai upscale hotels segment : hyatt regency chandigarh upper mid market hotels segment : hyatt place goa/candolim mid market hotels segment: mercure hyderabad kcp budget/economy hotels segment: ibis styles goa calangute louvre hotels group bags hicsa deal of the year award louvre hotels group bagged the hicsa deal of the year award for successfully acquiring the sarovar hotels & resorts portfolio in india. the acquisition has been a signiicant development in the indian hospitality space, adding more weight to louvre group’s proile in the mid- segment space. the award was received by saurabh chawla, chief development oicer, louvre hotels group.
2 h i c sa 20 17 what makes india tick – in a challenging environment, inding room for innovation moderator, dilip puri, guidance lead - south asia, marriott international, began the irst session at hicsa on what makes india tick. he covered a variety of subjects in discussion with the panellists which included arun nanda, chairman, mahindra holidays and resorts india; deep kalra, chairman and group ceo, makemytrip and peter kerkar, group chief executive oicer, cox & kings. we bring you here excerpts from the session. by priyaanka berry puri: i am going to start by asking the panel today their views on the latest bomb shell of the liquor ban? are these the kind of things we should continue to expect going forward? are these typically aberrations? nanda: how can you not blame the govern- ment? because the government could not control drunk driving the court had to do it. it is retrograde. instead of stopping something which is wrong, you have stopped the whole system. per rough estimates, 100,000 people will lose jobs and the state governments will lose at least 75000 crores worth of revenue. we want to stop drunk driving and this doesn’t make sense, you can still drink and drive. kalra: it is of course regressive but the real problem is more deeply rooted. this shows that tourism is simply not priority. if it was, then it would be plumb posting and not apunishmentposting.secondly,iftourism was priority, how can something like this get passed? alcohol is not the bed rock of any hotel doing well but if you can’t serve alcohol we all know you will lose a lot of tourists. is this only for vends or for hotels and restau- rants as well? there are legitimate businesses and huge investments being hit badly. kerkar:franklypeoplewillstillhaveac- cesstoalcoholinanycase.forexample,in states that are alcohol free, we all know how manypeoplestillmanagetoindaccess.peo- plewillindawaytogetaroundit.itreallyis short-sighted and irresponsible. puri: mr. nanda, you are also the chairman of thetourismandhospitalityskillcouncil.tellus a little more about the work happening there? attritionrates.thereisasigniicantneed.isit being addressed enough? the answer is no. there is a lot more to be done but i do feel theindustryisequallytobeblamed.oneof my jobs is to get the industry more involved and we have manged this to a certain extent. we are matching skills to requirements in the market and matching biodatas of new gradu- ates. we are also understanding from the industry what skills are required and focussing on those and pushing those skills. it is you, the hotel industry, who needs this, so if we work together, we will give you what you need. puri: we have both the online and ofﬂine part of business being represented here. deep, the big acquisition, the impetus to travel, tell us what do you see in the land- scape pre-merger and where you are now? nanda: the numbers we are talking about is roughly 3 million short-fall in skilled employ- ees.afterbpo’s,hospitalityhasthehighest kalra: it’s been a long journey and we had been market leaders but we needed to calibrate what we were doing. we decided on joining forces. the merger has worked out very well from a market perspective. the real proof of this pudding will only be told about a year down the line. mergers are all about people, and we must make it work. puri: peter, how have you seen your space evolvesincetheots’scame?anydifference in your strategy and plans? kerkar: we are still making money, and do about billion dollars of sales online. it is not like we haven’t looked at the online market space. thegamethatiseethebigotasplayingright nowisthelastmanstandinggameandirst mover advantage is immense. we are playing a different game. we are looking at packaged holidays and customization. we have a dif- ferentiator in the complexity of packaging and particularly dynamic packaging. if one of the online companies can manage this, then they willbeinaverypowerfulposition.so,ifeelwe areheretostayandsoaretheotas. the global ceo panel: industry leaders talk about their hotels, the road ahead it was a heavyweight session, involving some of the senior leaders in the hospitality industry space, domestic and international. it is merely an excerpt from the engaging session which saw serious discussion on the road ahead for these hospitality giants. we will bring you a comprehensive coverage of the session in the upcoming monthly issue of tourismfirst. by anagat choudhary christopher j nassetta, president & ceo, hilton i think most people know hilton in the global context. at this point we have around 8,00,000 rooms and about 1,000 hotels around 105 countries across the globe. we just reached a major milestone in the history of our company by splitting from real estate, which is a huge part of our legacy. we now are a pure consumer branded company, which has been the goal for some period of time. in addition to having some success in getting that done we have seen record levels of growth having opened a hotel a day on average last year. mark hoplamazian, president & ceo, hyatt hotels corporation we have a colleague base around the world and about 7,000 properties. we are thrilled to be long-time passengers with about 40 years in the industry and are excited about the growth that we see coming in the future. we got 5 hotels in india and we plan to have a lot more. the new andaz in delhi just opened up and it is helping us establish a different kind of position as far as contem- porary luxury is concerned in that category andlocation.overall,ithasbeenagood time for the company and we have had signiicantgrowth. rakesh sarna, md & ceo, taj hotels palaces resorts safaris we have rolled back our brand architec- turetoasmallerbrand.ourfocusremains to grow responsibly and we remain india centric. we only go outside the borders of india in to areas which are married to our brand, areas where our brand gets the respect and recognition it deserves. we are have crossed our customer base to markets insoutheastasiaaswell.thereismuch to do going forward. we have world class hotels across all brands and need to price our products accordingly and make sure we continue to grow consistently. vikram oberoi, md & ceo, the oberoi group i think what makes us slightly different, is that we have hotels that have loads of guests of the graft kind of luxury segment, both pleas- ure and business. we operate distinctive hotels which give guests great experience and by doing that what we see is a good number of return customers.
h i c sa 20 17 3 technology has altered hospitality landscape, says manav thadani manav thadani, chairman – asia paciic, hvs threw open the 20th edition of hisca yesterday. in a free-wheeling address to delegates, in the inaugural address in session titled ‘manav thadani: unplugged’, he pointed towards the sea change in the world which has had a direct bearing on the hospitality landscape, aided and catalysed by infusion of technology in our midst. travel and tourism sector poised to outpace global economy yet again, says david scowsill speaking at hicsa, david scowsill, president & ceo, world travel global as well as the regional economy. and tourism council talked about the profound and on-going impact that the travel and tourism sector has been having on the by shashank shekhar calling infusion of technology the biggest change in the marketplace in the past twenty years, manav thadani argued that the change caused by technology had created new chal- lenges for the industry to take notice of, and respond to for staying in the game. “the population has risen in the past twenty years. more importantly, a third of the popula- tion in the world today is now online – and this could probably be the single biggest change that we could have in the last twenty years, because how we market and sell, what we do and talk about is all related to this,” he said. much had changed in the past twenty years, including the cost of operating a hotel, with newer challenges like addressing security concerns, while incomes had not risen in proportion, he highlighted. “unfor- tunately, we have to pay for internet cost which was not there twenty years ago. we have to pay for security that is needed. we did not need that twenty years ago, and also we never thought about the fact that brands willfurtheroutsourcehowtoillroomsand givemoneytootas,andotherthirdparty members – which has, in many cases, led to depressed bottomline,” he said. these changes in the landscape had created anxiety in owners “who were constantly complaining, creating a need for hotelindustrytoindwaysofbalancingthat relationship, he added. he asserted that judging the parameters in the past twenty years, the overall picture was not a rosy one for the industry, and the need for course-correction was essential. he reﬂected on how hotels had failed in taking the lead in creating new trends, instead following what had been catching on the marketplace. “we are always followers. the challenge for the industry would be to take the lead in this. there are sectors that have done far better than us and we have not” he said. elucidating his argument, he noted that today’s research was bereft of brochures and depended on blogs, while the traditional travel agent had been replaced by online ones, like tripadvisor. taking stock of international footfalls into india, he placed his wager on china, given the lack of adequate direct connectivity between the two countries was addressed by respective governments. “the day we have morelightsyourhotelswillbefull.so,asan organisation, whether it is the wttc, or any other organisation that are right here, we re- ally need to start pushing the government for more ﬂight infrastructure between india and china,anddirectlights,notviasingapore, hong kong, or anywhere else.” adding that while footfalls from the middle east,usaandasiawasup,thegovernment needed to allocate resources commensurate to gains that the investment was to generate. “we need to know that as well, because the governmentisstillspendingmoneyinfrance, germany and japan, and i do not say that you do not spend the money, but we need to see where that business is coming from, and there- fore, we need to allocate resources to the right countries,” said manav thadani. “we are looking at hospitality as a part of a much wider travel and tour- ism sector. globally, our industry is in very good shape. every year, attheendofmarchwepublishdeinitiveresearchontheeconomic impact of our sector across 185 countries and around 25 regions of the world. according to this year’s research, which has just been published, travel and tourism grew by 3.3% in 2016 generating some 7.6 trillion dollars worldwide. this amounts to about 10% of the global gdp when all the in-direct induced impacts are considered. we supported a total of 292 million jobs in 2016, which is now one in ten jobs on the planet. global visitor exports, which is money spent by foreign visitors, accounted for almost 7% of total world exports and 30% in terms of global service exports. this is the 6th year in a row that travel and tourism has outpaced the global economy, demonstrating yet again the resilience of our sector and the enduring desire of people to travel and discover new places. we forecast that travel and tourism will grow around 3.8% in 2017 which will be a higher growth than 2016. the sector is also poised to outpace global economic growth, yet again. all this is despite the growing impacts of terrorism,therefugeecrisis,economicdificultiesandagrowingsentimentwhichsome politicians have, to close borders instead of keeping them open. the picture is the same ataregionallevel.ourresearchshowsthattravelandtourisminsouthasiasupports48 million jobs or one in eleven of all jobs in this region. it contributes around 252 billion dollars or 9% to the regions gdp. this is due to another 7% increase in 2017, making southasiaoneofthefastestgrowingregionsintheworld.aresearchalsoshowsthat globally travel and tourism employees more people than the automotive manufactur- ing,miningandinancialservicesindustriescombined.worldwide,thecompaniesand organisations which make up our sector, employee seven times more than the auto- motive manufacturing industry, four times more than the banking industry and twice thenumberofpeopleininancialservices.theseareextraordinarynumberswhich demonstrate the huge importance of travel and tourism and why governments need to prioritise maximising the long-term growth of our sector.” in the grand hyatt lobby yesterday, navin berry with k.b. kachru, hh udaipur and shashank warty. kapil chopra and rajeev menon pose for our shutterbug.
4 h i c sa 20 17 the leaders' panel at hosi shares the deining edge that makes for leadership the leaders' panel at hosi made for an interactive and engaging session with moderator manav thadani covering a range of subjects. the panellists included ajay bakaya, managing director, sarovar hotels and resorts, dipak haksar, chief executive oicer hotels division, itc limited, kurt straub, vice president operations, hyatt hotels corporation, neeraj govil, area vice president - south asia, marriott international and raj rana, chief executive oicer - south asia, carlson rezidor hotel group by priyaanka berry thadani: beginning with the discussion, i would like you to complete the sentence - 2017 will be a year of what for the hotel industry? bakaya:topicofdiscussionisdeinitelycur- rently the liquor ban. having said that we are expecting sustained growth for all. haksar: it will be a good year, we are very optimistic. straub: we are looking forward to a fabu- lous year; let’s see what mr. m odi has for us in the next couple of months. govil:forusitistheyearofintegrationmore than anything else. we have a lot of brands now and it is about positioning these brands in different markets. rana: i think for the industry it is going to betheyearofredcarpetandredtape.for our own company, we continue to open a hotel every 6 weeks and sign a hotel every 4 weeks. we are happy with that run rate and that run rate is likely to sustain this year. thadani: i wonder what the answers would havebeeninsayjanuaryorfebruarywith owners sitting here. the focus would have been on the budget for the year. why don’t we hear these same buzz words when we are doing budgeting exercises? why is it that the numbers are always held back? is there something we can be doing as leaders out here to ensure that the budgeting process is more fair? bakaya: i disagree that the budgeting pro- cess is conservative or tight. in our case, we have a very strong to and fro on the forecast. when you see the forecast for 75 hotels, about 10% come back to us and say you are doing something wrong. and we go back in our forecast and amend it. it is not cast in stone. however, i do feel forecasting must be challenging. i remember in large organiza- tions where i worked earlier on, where you owned all your properties, you could afford to be a lot more optimistic because if you didn’t reach your targets, heavens didn’t collapse. and the company would have a policy saying target 10-15% more than what you think you will achieve so you have a strong motivational tool for the staff to work towards. when you are working with an owner, he is planning all his cash ﬂows on what you are saying in your forecast and you need to be that much more on the spot than be optimistic. haksar: we have a very strong budgeting exercise,everyyearinthemonthoffebruary we go underground, where we go through the macro economy and look at the markets etc. the budget is actually monitored at the corporate level on a monthly or quarterly basis and that is a very strenuous process in terms of all parameters. we have owners also, the investors – we need to give them a return on capital employed and that is very clear. thadani: kurt, i am going to change the question for you a bit. what is the best and worst part of your job? i don’t know if this is yourirststintintoindia. straub: i have never been to india before. the best part about it is that you meet new people, see new cultures, you see all sorts ofnewchallenges.forme,it’sbeenthe10th time moving countries; this exploring of places and people is the best part. the worst part, if you can call it that, is that every time you go somewhere new, you basically start afresh. you don’t know the people and you don’t have things in place. which again can be a good thing which helps you also build your skills. govil: i agree with what kurt said. i am an inherent hotel junkie. i love staying at hotels, going to the spa, eating at hotels. i love that part of my job and the travel that comes with it. i get to do what i like to do. i enjoy the fact that you see people grow. i have seen a lot of my colleagues and peers grow and take on new roles. rana:ofcoursetravellingaroundtheworld is good. but i still think the best part of the job,asceo,istobeabletorenewacontract with an owner. i get a real thrill from this. even after 10-15 years of wear and tear, the team from that hotel did such a capable job that the owner still wants to join hands with you. as far as the worst part is concerned, it is seeing deserving and aspiring talent leave the hotel. because if you don’t have the position for someone who is deserving, if that persontofulilhisorheraspirationshasto leave, that is very heart breaking. thadani: raj, do you think hotels in india shouldfocusmoreonproitmanagementor revenue management? rana: they are of course linked. you can make all the revenue in the world but you can’t take revenue to the bank. ultimately whatyoutaketothebankistheproityou make.ithinktheproitjourneystartswith revenue. you also have to factor in good cost control and asset management. bakaya:proitisthekey.butyoucan’tdo one without the other. if you don’t have a top line and you only focus on the expense part, you won’t have a great bottom line. i think in the mid-market bracket it is critical that you watch every expense very carefully. how to gainfully employ your people from the minut- est job position? making sure that people that you hire have enough to do and you don’t have ﬂoaters. a larger hotel can still afford ﬂoaters. next is energy costs, which is a large thing in india. how to optimally manage this? thadani: neeraj, you said that you were in- tegrating two chains and that it is challenging to say the least. i would imagine that poten- tiallystarwoodandmarriotthaddifferent cost structures, when you start adding all the hidden cost, that difference can be up to 200- 300 base points…. now that you have them all under one umbrella how do you deal with owners who have both your products? govil: we have several ownership groups that have brands on both sides. if you were to ask me today, that when we merged on 23rdofseptember,thatwewouldbewhere we are on 31st of march and would we be satisiedwiththat,iwouldsayyes.wehave made a lot of progress on multiple fronts in terms of integration. what we are doing right now is honouring the current agree- ments which we inherited as part of the merger. having said that people do compare the cost structure and want the best. we are looking at what processes we can stream- line. we made a considerable amount of progress on the loyalty programme where we linked both on day one itself. we are also working on similar lines across the cost structures. there is a lot of work on procure- ment, on it costs etc. thadani: kurt, could you tell us your man- it is fraternity time with sunil ghadiok, dilip puri, suresh kumar and dipak haksar. companies based out of hyderabad. we have 109 spas present in india and uae andourtargetistohave200outletsbytheendofthisiscalyear.wearelaunch- ingaretailbrand,ode,aluxurywellnessproductlineandinternationalhouse of wellness, a high end tea brand. we are getting into boutique wellness resorts where the spa is the main attraction. we are present as stand-alone spas, large villaspas,atairports,atmallsandinhighstreets.wearehereathicsaaswe are operating spas in approximately 75 hotels across the country and the gulf and are here to meet the hospitality industry and work in tandem with them”. wespeakwithdarshanrawal,businessdevelopmentheadindiaato2spa,to learnmoreaboutthisbrandandunderstandwhatbringsthemtohicsa2017. “we started 9 years ago, and are today one of asia’s largest spa operation
h i c sa 20 17 5 agement style? do you have a particular way of doing things? straub: it is all about care and looking out for people. we can’t do it alone and we need our teams to perform. we care for people so that they can be their best. and it is not only about employees but also our guests. i believe you give guidance, support them and bring them back on track if need be but basically be there as a coach, rather than as a boss. thadani: dipak, you have been with itc for 4 decades, what do you like most about that company and if could change something, what would that be? haksar: close to 4 decades now. it is very dificulttodaytosaysomethingiwould change. itc as a company really nurtures its talent. people are the most valuable assets. it is the management’s responsibility to create a work environment of empowerment and in- novation and development of the individual. itc looks at talent in a very holistic manner. the entire compensation package ensures that at every stage you are looked after including the medical. the organization goes to any extent to look after people and their families. this keeps people wedded to the organization with a huge amount of loyalty. thadani: neeraj, i think post the merger, now you have 15 operating brands in india. which brand do you think will lead the com- bined entities growth in india? govil: with the integration now, we have a very good distribution across the segments. wehaveluxurybrandswithstregis,ritz carlton, jw marriott and the w that are well distributed geographically as well. we have a good portfolio in terms of full service pre- mium brands, moderate and mid-tier brands. all three segments are very important for us. there is more development today in the resort category of hotels, moderate and mid- tier markets. as we open hotels now, a lot of our hotels are in the tertiary markets while there continue to be openings in bangalore and hyderabad and such cities. you will see growth across all three segments for us. thadani: what do you think is going to lead business? is it business, mice or leisure that will bring room nights to your hotels? govil: currently, it is the business seg- ment without a doubt. business travel will determine where our revenues go in the future. a lot of our brands are positioned to cater to the business traveller. close to 75% of our revenue comes from this segment and it is expected to double by 2025. i do also see the demand for leisure and resort destination growing. as far as mice goes, it has tremendous potential, we need to have world class convention centres and we need hotels close to those centres. if what the government is planning in terms of opening large convention facilities in india, if imple- mented, then this segment will explode as well. thadani: kurt, why do you think customers should chose andaz at aerocity over a jw marriott? straub: these are two completely different brands. the andaz really is for the creative class who is looking for something different and have their own style. neither is better or worse, they just attract different kinds of guests. also, the days of the glitter and glamour are over, so in terms of design, it is important we design hotels for the people that want to see something different. but every hotel type has its space in the market. aerocity has evolved a lot in the past years and for us it is very exciting to be there. a lot more coming up at andaz and we are looking to expand the brand in the indian sub-continent. govil: to add to that, i feel there is a lot to be gained from the synergy of the two hotels. the gms of the two hotels, along with pull- man went and got a lot of mice business into aerocityasadestination.soyes,whilewe may compete at some point for the cus- tomer, there is more to be gained in working together. thadani: raj coming to you, carlson has a reputation, at least in india of being a ﬂexible brand when it comes to dealing with hotel owners. that’s probably also the reason you have over 100 hotels. what is a deal breaker withanowner?oriseverythingpossible with owners? rana:formelexibleisbeingpractical and relevant. and there is slight differ- encebetweenthetwo.flexibleisbending backwards in terms of standards, design, etc and we don’t do that. but we certainly are practicalandrelevant.forexample,ifweare building a hotel in the secondary market, it might be only an 80 room property but know- ingthatf&bpotentialisgood,youwouldstill allow extensive banquet space. giving value to the realities of the landscape that is going to make the hotel successful and get a return for the owner, helps us be successful in the overall game. thadani: what is the one advice anyone has ever given you that you will never forget? bakaya: always take your work seriously, but never take life too seriously. it’s the best advice i ever got. haksar: i remember the chairman when i had newly joined the company saying, you must have integrity - with myself, with my people and be honest with your guests. you can only show empathy if you are a man of integrity and honesty. straub: don’t take life too seriously and don’t always react to everything you see and hear right away. it is ok not to respond to an email right away, or to say, manav can i think about this and get back to you. it solves half of the problems on its own. and remember to have some fun when you work! govil: i think it important to enjoy what you do and its different things for different peo- ple. if our industry is all about people and it is very important that you listen. i say this to all the gms, very important that you believe in people and that they will get it right pro- vided they get the right environment. rana: two things come to mind – i know you alone can do it but you can’t do it alone. it speaks to team work. and the other is from stevejobs,thatthemusicianisplayingthe instrument and i am playing the orchestra. i feel the gm is playing the orchestra and putting things together while all department heads are excellent musicians in their depart- ments. theideaofcateringtoanexclusivemarketofcuppaaicionados,byspecialising ingoldcoffeeandpremiumcoffeeisindingmanytakers,includingtopive- star hotel brands in the country. ‘devi’ is a speciality gold coffee company ‘devi’ which has focussed on gold and premium coffee, sourced from over 15 states across the country. having been in business in india since 2011, it has become the leading gourmet coffee-maker in the nation. it is an intercalate process of selection, and roasting of coffee beans to maintain quality, before it reaches the consumer, all done here, domestically– adding muscle to ‘make in india’. internationally, ‘devi’ importscoffeefrombrazil,sumatra,kenyaandethiopia,givingmoreoptionsto consumers. how can hospitality drive brand india? rakesh sarna, managing director and ceo, taj hotels palaces resorts safaris, recommends a pro-active role, as a responsible society and as an industry in contributing to building a formidable brand india. first by addressing the basics of focussing on our people and skill development and of valuing their role in brand india. and lastly, of playing an active role in keeping india clean. in presenting the nation in the best light, in the best manner possible. by priyaanka berry “i am here today to take your time, to ask myself some questions – and the fundamental ques- tion is: are we brand india? i hear a lot of angst about how do we become a great country? i can’t help but feel maybe it is time i ask myself what am i doing for this? do i own brand india? am i brand india? what is brand india? it is commonly seen as a campaign to promote india as an emerg- ing market and destination for visitors and investors. my hum- ble question is: are we mere spectators or are we going to be active participants to build brand india? it has so many di- mensions. brand india is about making india a country that can hold its head high on a global stage, it is about cleaning up our country and not waiting for the government to do it for us. we are living brand india? do we take brand india seriously each day? rakesh sarna are we raising the self-esteem of our countrymen and of our demographic divi- dend? they are not literate. they don’t have a skill. when you don’t have a skill and youarenotliterateyoucannothaveahealthyself-esteem.so,whatarewegoingto do to make brand india proud? are we going to get involved? and raise their self- esteem; give them a skill? as an industry that is so keen to provide sincere care to our guests, are we also going to sincerely care about the people who are meant to provide this sincere care? and accept them as who they are. but if we don’t have the demo- graphic dividend literate, with a healthy self-esteem, then this culture of servility will not go away and this is a cancer to our future prosperity. we can afford the best of marble and crystals and imported foods and goods and the best chefs, but the one critical ingredient in this society and in this industry, in makingawholesomebrandindia,isirstlookingafterourownpeople.peopleareour true brand guardians of the hotel industry of india. people across the globe speak of india as so exotic, the food, the culture, the diver- sityandtheheritagebuttheyalwaysinishoffthatit’ssodirty.thisbreaksmyheart. isthisbrandindia?canweletthisbebrandindia?orarewegoingtosaythatwewill make brand india, because we own it, because we are brand india. if we all get together and take a pledge to clean our country, to give our people askillandraisetheirself-esteem,thiswilldeinethefutureofbrandindia.thiswill make brand india. let’s work on making brand india powerful. 780aircraftsareonordertobedeliveredinthenext36months.smallproblemis that we don’t have enough runways, but we will come to it. we can do it. we can have so much potential for intra-india travel. the purchasing power of indians is increasing every day. this doesn’t mean we don’t value the foreign guests but let’s not just bank on that. let’s get the basics right. and those basics are our people and our environ- ment. just keep the environment clean, as basic as that. today india, stands on the cusp of transformational change to good fortunes, but please don’t take brand india lightly. we as a collective body, we have a responsibility to our future generations to set the right example. we owe it to mother india to present it in its best grace and beauty. no one can do it but us. digivaletishereathicsa.guestroomdigitalsolutions,basedoutof indore, catering to the world. they have installations in over 12000 rooms worldwide, out of which some 5000+ are in india. they are popular in dubai, singaporeandarethebrandstandardsforemaarhotels.inindia,theoberoi hotelshavebeguntousethem,atsukhvilasamongothers. digivaletdoesnotcomecheap.atoplinepackagemaycostuptous$4000 but this is a one time cost. athicsa,youcanmeetankitbakliwal,directorengineering&clientrela- tions and ajay joshi, regional director. digivalet is a worthy example of make in india, made for the world!
6 h i c sa 20 17 loyalty for owners or operators: general managers bat for a balance between the two one of the key conundrums facing the modern day gms is whether to place their loyalty towards the brand, or towards their owner. the issue came to fore in the session titled ‘gm’s dilemma: loyalty to owner or brand. industry insiders shared their understanding of the tricky issue, invariably conceding that a delicate balance between the two, with focus on realising owner’s expectation on inancial returns was the way forward. by shashank shekhar anurag bhatnagar, multi-property vice president luxury – india, marriott international on reading the management contract and key issues that they ﬂag off yes,wedoreadthecontract.onehastounder- stand that management contracts are signed 4-5, sometimes 10 years, before you move into the hotel. it was very relevant in that point of time. although the relationship is driven and foundation is laid through the management contract, then you will live, breathe, interact with the ownership, but coming to your second part of the question, the dilemma starts, in terms of, brand vs. the gm. i think you are used tend to not think like the owner. management contract for us is, obviously, a guiding light. to us, it is there. i really hope and pray that necessarily we do not have to evokethemanagementcontract.foranygen- eral manager. that is not the best thing to do. on the process of pre-opening and its importance it is where you lay out the foundation of your future.notonlyintermsoflogisticsandi- nances, but also in terms of getting the brand component right. it is also to ensure that there is a lot of interaction with the owner- ship, to develop a bond of trust, commitment and transparency. chetan bhatnagar, general manager, fortuneselectexotica,navimumbai on whether he ﬁnds anything in the management contract that makes him not sign it. on elements therein. as mentioned before, the management con- tract has been drafted many years before, but when you take on a role, you actually sign on a new management contract – which will be signed on the budget – because the manage- ment contract part is already been done and delivered, by the owner and the brand. that is where your thinking starts. you do not need to refer too much to the management contract, because that is just the guiding line, in terms of what you are supposed to deliver. when the owner sees you, he expects a lot more than what is just written in the manage- ment contract. sridhar b nair, general manager, the leela goa on reading the management contract and key issues that they ﬂag off. larger issues related to management contracts. while i do agree with anuraag in parts. i was also a part of the team that drafted the management contract and i think the more you put it in print, there is greater under- standing and clarity between the owner and operator.so,inthatsense,whileidoagree that they are more of guidelines, but i think it helpsus,helpsgeneralmanagers,deinitely, to make sure that there is no ambiguity in understanding between the owner and the operator – and that can only happen when the management contract is comprehensive and it is as clear as it can be. on how things have changed since his hotel has become a managed property i was very fortune that right at the time when we started our discussions with prospective owners,iwasinvolvedintheprocess.so,i had a chance to prepare my team. we had discussions with owners to make sure that there was no turbulence, as far as team’s morale is concerned, even while the transi- tion was happening. we were very fortunate that the need for the property to maintain its standards, even during the transition, was understood. and, when i got on to preparing my team, one of the biggest challenges was to prepare the team mentally for the sale that was to happen. the transition between the ownership perspective, to the opera- tor perspective. your perspective changes overnight. your targets change; people have to be sensitized. vikram reddy, regional vice president andgm,fourseasonshotelmumbai on top three conﬂicts that happen be- tween an owner and an operator which involves the general manager. it starts when you are talking to the hotel on returns on their investment, managing their expectations, because owners come with certain expectations. i think we need to manage the expectations of the owner from dayone.weneedtomanagetheinancial expectations of the owner. on whether life is easier for him as investors look at the larger picture i mean, life is never easy in business. you haveupsanddown.somecitiesareeasier, othersaremoredificult.thingshavechanged now. in the old days, the development depart- ment used to do all the negotiations and the general manager used to come at the last minute and take over. that has changed now. on indian owners and how different they are from the owners in the west ithinkintheusaitisprettymucheasier, because there you meet them at the begin- ning of the year, you do your budgets and they see you at the end of the year. that, now,isalsochanging.ownershavebecome more savvy in the hotel business. their expectations are high, and they are more activelyinvolved,butiindthatwhenyou engage your owners in a positive man- ner, it makes your life easy. to give you an example, sometimes, owners come and say whether can you try this new thing in your hotel. in the old days, you could say that we cannot do that, it just does not go with the brand. but today, you cannot do that. vishal jamual, gm, radisson blu resorts&spaalibaug on managing expectations of the owner ownersareveryambitious.theyfeelthat theyknowthebusinesswell.theirstchal- lenge that everyone faces is, obviously, there should not be a case of overpromise and under-delivery,intermsofinances.thatis the number one issue. another challenge for the general manager is to ensure that brand promises are delivered. when the guest comes, he expects to a certain standard which is based on his trust on the brand. and the winner is jw marriott sahar mystery box challenge, co-branded by eazydiner, saw some exciting moments with 6 participants and 3 jury members getting together. hvs founder steve rushmore alongwith camellia panjabi and vir sanghvi were the judges. jw marriott mumbai sahar walked away as the meritorious winner.
h i c sa 20 17 7 regional cuisines, uncomplicated oferings gain traction with chefs on the hot seat moderated by vir sanghvi, the session participated by top chefs of ive-star hotels deliberated on changing preferences of the indian consumers, along with how regional cuisines were inding traction, once again. we bring you excerpts from the session’s proceedings: by shashank shekhar ashis rout, executive chef, intercontinen- tal chennai mahabalipuram resort on the biggest learning about the in- dian market in the last three years i think taste is getting bold day by day. with more and more people travelling around, i see the acceptance of global cuisines is getting much better than what it was in the previous years. people are going back to basics. no more things that are complicated ontheplate.simplelavoursandclean,neat plates is what i have seen the last three years. is indian food changing? yes. if i look at mumbai, ‘the bombay can- teen’, they are so competitive that they have gone an extra mile. i am sure all the res- taurants are changing. it has got to do with competition. the whole trend is changing nowadays. anirudha roy, executive chef, taj lands end, mumbai on the biggest learning about the in- dian market in the last three years ithink,irstly,thecustomerisgettingmore and more discerning, but more than that, and i feel it is very good for the market, is that,inally,indianingredientsarebeingcel- ebrated. people know their ingredients. the himalayan salt, for instance, which was prob- ably used overseas in the western market more than it was used in the indian market is being used more than before. on restaurants in ﬁve-star hotels in danger of closing down with lower numbers of locals taking to it here, it is not about the food and its prepara- tion. it is about re-inventing your thoughts. i think accountants in the hotels need to be more innovative and not put the pressure of food cost on us. at the end of the day you do not take the percentage to the bank, you take themarginmoneytothebank.so,oneneeds to look at the margins and see if they are making money – and that is where the game changing lies. on how changing food menu has turned the tables we took a conscious call to move away from food that was inspired by western ingredi- ents, and stick to basic indian food and we thought we will celebrate regional food – and i think that is what is happening with indian food. we have got awadhi and punjabi cuisines. regional food is coming of age. therefore, people have started celebrating indian ingredients. the only challenge is the lack of logistical support in india. satbir bakshi, executive chef, theoberoimumbai on the biggest learning about the in- dian market in the last three years the best thing that has happened in india is that a lot of restaurants have opened up. a lot of competition is there which was not the case some years ago. i think that has really helpedthecustomer.ofcourse,ithelpsus because where there is competition, there isexcellence.so,indianguestshavealotof options now. they no longer need to go to ive-starhotels.theycanchoosefromfree- standing restaurants and that itself motivates everybody to go out, do new things and still stick to basics. the market has really helped the overall industry. on restaurants in ﬁve-star hotels in danger of closing down with lower numbers of locals taking to it itisgettingmoreandmoredificult.ithink that hotels are waking up to the idea, and they start doing things that are better than a free-standing restaurant then i do not think there is much difference. on using internationally sourced ingre- dients we can manipulate the guest but not all the time. guests have travelled world over and ask for international dishes. while you can tell the guest to try something local instead, but the point is that you will still have to keep some exotic ingredients because people do ask for it. what we should do is to get a sup- ply chain which is able to give us ingredients at, may be, a cheaper rate. hotel restaurants cannot run like free-standing restaurants. we need to have a lot of restaurants, a lot cui- sines and a lot of experiences. in order to do that, there will some amount of dependence on international cuisines and ingredients. shivneet pohoja, executive chef, itc grand bharat, gurgaon on the biggest learning about the in- dian market in the last three years what i really feel about the indian market, or the indian diner coming to our restaurant is that we feel, at least in the ncr region, thatpeoplearestilltryingtoindastable ground as to what they really like, and what they really do not like. in ncr, because i work in ncr, people are still experimenting with different kinds of cuisines. they are still open to traditional cuisines being served inaverycontemporaryway.sometimes, it is not done properly, but you will see a lot of people going in and experimenting withthem.so,whileitalkabouttraditional cuisines what i really mean is we have seen a lot of people experimenting with indian cuisines, trying to bring in traditional ﬂavours in a very modern way – and we have seen views that are in extreme. either peopleloveit,ortheydonot.so,ifeelthat the diner right now is in a stage where he is not decided which way he is going to go, as comparedtosingaporeprobably–wherei had a chance to go and work – where peo- ple really know what they want. vishal atreya, executive chef, jwmariottmumbaisahar on the changing environment for chefs and challenge of surviving with current food cost and prices yes, absolutely. eventually, at the end of the day it is the topline that needs to be chased, rather than the bottomline. on the changing character of the in- dian clientele when it comes to a dining experience, it is more about the experience. the more there is show and presentation, the better people like it. at the end of the day, i would add, that it is good quality of ingredients and food that sustains the last. ginger promises a 100 strong delegation in two years ginger ceo rahul pandit, when we asked him if this was his army, conidentally asserted that his delegation would be 100 strong in two years time, relecting the growth envisaged in the ginger family! pictured above is the ginger family with rakesh sarna and chinmai sharma.
8 h i c sa 20 17 accorhotels set to become full spectrum service provider in travel industry michael issenberg, chairman & ceo, asia paciic, accorhotels shares the group’s foray in one of the most important hospitality markets in the world – apac. l ast year was a record-breaking year foraccorhotelsasthegroupinalised more acquisitions and alliances than at any other time in its history. in january 2016 the group completed its stra- tegic alliance with huazhu hotels group in china, providing it with access to more than 70 million members of the h rewards loyalty program in the world’s largest outbound travel market. the deal will support more rapid expansion of the novotel, mercure and ibis brands across china, while helping to en- courage the 140 million chinese who travel overseas to stay with accorhotels brands around the world. injuly,theinalisationoftheacquisition oftherafles,fairmontandswissotelbrands added 120 hotels and 43,000 rooms to the group’s global portfolio and made accorho- tels the second largest operator of luxury hotels in the world, with 205 luxury proper- ties globally. in addition to expanding its offering in the luxury market, accorhotels is also clearly set on growing in the lifestyle sector, recently setting up a separate lifestyle division that willencompassthejo&joebrand,25hours hotelsandmamashelter. jo&joeisatrendynew‘openhouse’ concept that provides the best of hotels, hos- tels and sharing spaces and was created by accorhotels’ new marketing innovation lab. thegroupplanstohave50jo&joesglobally by 2020. meanwhile, accorhotels has invested a 30% stake in 25hours hotels, whose strongly themed, design-oriented boutique hotels have attracted a big following in europe and a35%investmentinmamashelter,avery cool urban concept with lively social spaces and creative rooms. these three brands are highly individualised and are aimed squarely at millennials and the millennial-minded. they clearly demonstrate that accorhotels isirmlyalignedwithaconsumerpushfor in addition to dynamic expansion of its hotel network, accorhotels has gone beyond being just a hotel operator by moving into several growing and emerging verticals in hospitality, including luxury home rentals and concierge services. indeed, the group is set to become a full spectrum service provider in the industry, catering to the needs of travellers at every step of their journey and in every type of accommodation. ,, and concierge services. indeed, the group is set to become a full spec- trum service provider in the industry, catering to the needs of travellers at every step of their journey and in every type of accommodation. accorhotels has moved in the private rental space more than any other hotel group, acquiring 100% ofonefinestay,49%ofsquarebreak and30%ofoasiscollections.more recently the group announced its intention to acquire 100% of travel keys, adding a further 5000 private rental homes to its network and bringing the total portfolio to more than 8500 homes around the world. accorhotels also invested an 80% stake in john paul, a leading player in premium customer and employee loyalty services. there are big plans to utilise john paul to enhance the guest experience of loyalty members, using john paul’s crm expertise and partnerships to provide more person- alised service to its guests. through each of these acquisi- tions, accorhotels has demonstrated its agility to move where consumer demand is shifting and to stay ahead of the curve in an industry that is currently in a state of major ﬂux. michael issenberg chairman & ceo, asia pacific, accorhotels more authentic, individualised and sociable lifestyle hotels. hotels worldwide, thanks to banyan tree’s renowned expertise in spas. the resort segment is another sector in which accorhotels is rapidly expanding, in part thanks to a strategic partnership with luxe resort brand banyan tree, which will see accorhotels co-develop banyan tree’s brands outside of china, thailand, vietnam, greece and parts of mexico and the mal- dives. in addition to taking banyan tree more global, the deal will allow accorhotels to collaborate on new spas in selected luxury accorhotels also recently announced its acquisition of the luxury resort brand rixos, which operates resorts in some of the world’s most prestigious leisure destinations, pre- dominantly in europe and the middle east. in addition to dynamic expansion of its hotel network, accorhotels has gone beyond being just a hotel operator by moving into several growing and emerging verticals in hospitality, including luxury home rentals this year the group will set up a separate subsidiary of its hotelinvest business which concerns its owned and leased hotels. this will open up a majority of its capital to long-term investors (insurance companies, real estate investment funds etc) and free up funds so that the group can continue to accelerate its growth. through this project accorhotels will be able to take advantage of opportunities it sees to develop new prod- ucts and services and further strengthen its competitive edge at a time when the hotel and travel industries are changing profoundly. team hvs that brings together the hotel industry at hicsa! pictured together with manav thadani by our photographer yesterday. not everybody is here naturally, as it is always diicult to ensure the entire team in one place for an impromptu photograph.
h i c sa 20 17
10 h i c sa 20 17 hospitality as driver o k.b. kachru, principal advisor, carlson rezidor india manav thadani, chairman, hvs - apac focussing on mid-markets is necessary to build numbers domestic leisure travel fuelling numbers, trend set to continue industry must take some responsibility, so should the government. they must also take some responsibility and there has to be a close working relationship between the two. there were some other examples given in previous sessions and i was amazed. there is a place between guwahati and some town called margherita, i am not very familiar with it, i believe in those 19 kilometres there are 19 golf courses, and nobody has heard of them. ,, i am an owner as well. i think owners will spend money where they think they will get returns on what they are investing on. i think one interesting phenomenon for india, and since we are at the tourism summit, i have to say that leisure travel in india, overall, is up – and it is being fuelled by domestic tourism to al larger extent than international which is a very good thing, because international numbers are very low.,, k.b. kachru manav thadani “on change in the hospitality landscape in goa and elsewhere, and an overview on the mid- market firstofall,itmustbecomplimentedthatthis panel is not discussing usual things, like taxes and licenses, and the problems that we have been discussing for the last twenty years. prob- ably, i have been hanging around for a longer time, but we are discussing real things. we are focussing on where we ought to be; what should we do, and what are the challenges. talking about goa, markets are changing and even for an international company, for us and others like marriott, are focusing on tier-2 and tier-3 leisure destinations. we have four hotels in goa and all of them are mid- market, mid-market upscale hotels. we are not there in the luxury segment at all. i feel, if you really want numbers, we want to move from eight million to sixteen million, then we have to focus in the mid-market and upscale. i mean that is the market to focus on, if we reallywantnumbers.otherwise,wewilljust go to the absolute upper niche and we will be struggling at the budget line. it is predicted, i read a report somewhere, thatinthenextiveyearstherewouldbe fourty percent growth in the mid-market seg- ment vis-à-vis the luxury segment – which is only pegged at 6.5%. we have to start accepting and acknowl- edging that there is a shift towards the mid-market and unless we focus on this mar- ket, i do not thing we will get our numbers. on the possibility of looking at the bigger picture of the unorganised sector, and how they can be brought mainstream i have no doubt that there would be a posi- tive shift towards the organised, but to say that the segment will be over, my answer is no. that is not going to happen. i would like to stretch it a little bit. i think going back to your stance of the need for a mid-market, we need to start focussing on what we need to do to really move up the economy segment, upper-end of the economy and the mid- market segment. on adrs thereisnojustiicationwhyouradrisnot improving in line with what is happening. deep kalra, i think, explained the whole thing on a much bigger canvas. he said that hotels are their target area where they are making more money than airlines, because they are discounting.so,ithinktakingcuefromwhat sanjaysaid,ithinkitishightimethatwe consolidate and start behaving, at least, in the directionofgettingmorematureinthisield. on industry taking the responsibility of promoting international inbound industry must take some responsibility, so should the government. they must also take some responsibility and there has to be a close working relationship between the two. there were some other examples given in previous sessions and i was amazed. there is a place between guwahati and some town called margherita, i am not very familiar with it, i believe in those 19 kilometres there are 19 golf courses, and nobody has heard of them. we do not know. nobody has marketed them. the state government has a role. the central gov- ernment has a role, and whatever the industry can do. but if you expect only hotel companies to come and promote india, i am afraid i am being blunt, i do not think it is going to happen. it can happen by being together. “on asiapac. how hotels are doing in the neighbouring countries; their business, arrs and more: firstofall,comparingindiatotheasian continent, i think that similarities are there in many countries right now. i do follow some of theothercountries.singapore,thailandand indonesia are all struggling in ways similar to india – where occupancies have been doing very well, but the rate movement has not really hap- pened. i think other than japan and philippines which are having good years, i do not know the details as to why they are having good years, but just the basic overriding numbers are strong in those markets. i think most other markets have somewhat struggled. closer to home, why we thought things will do well and why they have not is partly is occupancies have done well. in the past when rates started crossing 70%, rates used to go up by 10-12%. rates used to go up by double-digits. today, many markets when they have crossed that 70% threshold, and in some cases even mid to high seventies, the growth rate is not in the double-digit bracket. it is happening, but in single-digits. very few markets areseeingthat.so,intermsofrevpar,you should have still grown in double-digits in many other markets. but there are markets where that has not happened. it has been very uneven, and that is the disappointment, i think, with owners. there was a lot of expectation that it would hap- pen and it has not really taken place. on whether owners are receptive to the idea of spending money on destination marketing i am an owner as well. i think owners will spend money where they think they will get returns on what they are investing on. i think one interesting phenomenon for india, and since we are at the tourism summit, i have to say that leisure travel in india, overall, is up – and it is being fuelled by domestic tourism to al larger extent than international which is a very good thing, because internationalnumbersareverylow.so,ifyou ask rohit (fellow panellist) and he has got some leisure hotels that are heritage properties – those aredoingverywell.ifyouasktheoberoi’s,those hotels in the leisure segment are doing very well, compared to ten years ago where leisure markets used to struggle, and business hotels used to do well. today, it is practically reversed. if you have got a good property at a good location, in terms of leisure, and you are providing that experiential travel, those hotels are doing very well. domestic tourism has got into every market. jaipur may not be as interesting to may as co- org, or a hotel outside of delhi, but it all about accessibility. on goa goa is an evergreen market. you have got so many rooms coming in, and you can build ten more hotels; you would want to go to goa and try the new hotel out. on pushing tourism recently, i was a part of the government coun- cil, actually it was headed by amitabh kant, and he invited few of us and one of the sugges- tions that came forward was that, of course you have the incredible india 2.0 which is being launched and how can that money be spent, but one of the suggestions that was bought was that why can every guest pay ten rupees – i am just putting a number – every time he checks inahotel,andyouputthatintoacorpus.so, money spent by people staying in delhi will be collected and utilized in delhi. the government can then match that fund to promote a particu- lar destination. it has happened in many other globalcities,whetheritsingapore,whetheritis new york city.
h i c sa 20 17 11 ver of new-age tourism dilip puri, founder, indian school of hospitality one of the key sessions in skill development in the hospitality industry the recently concluded will impact the larger service sector we do not foster that spirit of innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship in the way we run our curriculums, at least in hospitality. that is my sense of where we are today. i think bringing that in will foster that spirit again. entrepreneurship, innovation and bringing these people into our industry will make and create products and experiences which will better attract the tourism market, and that is another role i see hospitality playing. today, when we speak about hospitality as an industry, i think it encompasses all other allied businesses – think aviation, cruise liners, retail and luxury. hospitality per se, from an education perspective, training perspective, brings about the best in terms of customer service front-facing businesses – which is now not restricted to hotels. ,, dilip puri “on how the unorganised sector can become a part of the larger framework i think they are already getting organised. i mean think what social media does. what tripadvisor does. today, whether you are staying in a guesthouse or you are stayinginanoyo,oryouarestayinginaive-starluxury,the opportunity for the customer to share those experiences to determine whether people will go back to that guesthouse or that hotel is in itself a certain amount of quality and standardization. if you are going and booking a guest house, and still review whether someone has stayed there, if it is not good you will not stay there. so, if you are talking about the unorganised sector, that sectorisself-organising.youtaketheexampleofoyo.oyois aggregatingthatsector.oyoandothersuchplayers.and,this is the example all over the world. today, after many years of leg- islation, airbnb is almost regulated like a hotel company in the unitedstates.thebigcompaniesfoughtsayingwhywouldthe lodging tax be different for this kind of hotel accommodation. so,myanswertothequestionisthatorganisingisself-organis- ing. it does not necessarily need massive amounts of regulation to be able to do that. and, this sector is organising itself better with better guarantee of quality experiences. you will see more and more tourists at the lower end of the market, the backpack- ers if you like, use these types of products. and, that is the answer to our discussion that how can the industry support tourism without necessarily having too much regulation, and kind of self-regulating itself in a way. on the need for the organised sector to handhold the unorganised sector in becoming more corporate in nature they do not need big chains and big hotels to help them do that. i think, as you see improvements in quality of skilling the workforce, and it begins to happen, you will not see the need for big hotels and chains to step in and handhold the smaller guy. the smaller guy lands up doing probably a more proitablejobofrunninghisbusiness,becauseheisrunning it himself. he is closer to his customer, but i would like to believe that the sector in the future, for our country, will be a farmoresigniicantplayerincourtingtourists,domesticand international, and in growth of tourism than us big brands. on the need for skilled manpower and where it will come from to be clear, what i am setting out to do is in more higher education space, bringing in more international quality into our hospitality and education. but to answer the question, it isalreadyhappening.thereisagenuinebeliefthatthe‘skill india’ mission can become a bandwagon for people to upscale and provide the talent needed at the level. that is where the employment is going to come from, because these millions and millions of guesthouses and hotel rooms in tier-2,3,4 and 5 markets, they all need a better quality of skill talent then they certainlyhave.so,ithinkthereisalreadyamovetowardsthat. and people who are truly entrepreneurial in their spirit, setting up a small business or a guest house can be really lucrative for an entrepreneur. i have, in my research, found out that students want to come and do a four-year program in hospitality not to work in hotels, but to become entrepreneurs. we do not foster that spirit of innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship in the way we run our curriculums, at least in hospitality. that is my sense of where we are today. i think bringing that in will foster that spirit again. entrepreneurship, innovation and bringing these people into our industry will make and create products and experiences which will better attract the tourism market, and that is another role i see hospitality playing. on the trend of trained hospitality professionals taking to other sectors, and whether that trend has ceased of late no, it has not. i do not think it should. today, when we speak about hospitality as an industry, i think it encompasses all other allied businesses – think aviation, cruise liners, retail and luxury. hospitality per se, from an education perspective, training perspective, brings about the best in terms of customer service front-facing businesses – which is now not restricted to hotels. we train and educate, and what i want to do, is not hospitality as we understand it as hotels. it is a whole larger sector in the services industry which i am talking about. india tourism summit was dedicated to deciphering how the hospitality industry could drive tourism. the role of destination promotion, creating new products, and the need for adequate skill enhancement to take on the challenges emanating in a dynamic marketplace, and more, came under scrutiny by a heavyweight panel which included senior industry leaders. one of the most important takeaways of the session was the need for creating more cohesion between the industry and government to promote destinations – which would in turn drive tourism. also, in focus was how to hone the art of storytelling for taking india to the global tourism marketplace. we bring you excerpts from the proceedings…
14 h i c sa 20 17 rohit khosla, senior vice president–operations, taj hotels resorts and palaces we will see room rates heading north as industry heads towards more maturity on adrs on leisure and indian domestic market, and also about the foreign leisure market as far as the foreign tourist market is concerned, there is a section that continue to travel, and india has a lot of interest in key markets. so,iwouldnotsaythatforeign tourist market is declining, but what i would say is that domestic tourism and travel is increasing. so,iwouldnotsaythatweneedto be extremely concerned that the numbers are dropping. in fact, the government has taken some great initiativeslikee-visa.so,thereis a reporting of higher number of tourist arrivals. i would not say that it is going down but domestic is growing far better than interna- tional inbound. wouldindalotofstressasfaras tourismiguresandleisuredestina- tioniguresareconcerned,but that is getting supported by mice and weddings etc. if you look at individual sector, let us say coorg, or corbett, or bekal, or guwahati. even if i look at these sectors, we look at these sectors, there is not too much of supply. we see that where there is not too much of supply, we are doing reasonably well over there, and the iguresarelookingup. on whether the trend is same with hotels that are more international footfalls driven, compared to domestic driven there are certain destinations that have been developed over a period of time, and coming back some people like to play the role of follower, but there are people who play leaders. coming to what manav was talkingabout,wedoindthatour properties dealing with leisure busi- nessaredeinitelydoingbetter.we are able to drive their rates better than in business locations. and, i guess a lot of it is to do with the competitive scenario. it is the demand-supply situation, wherein in certain leisure destina- tionsweindthatsupplyisstill notthatmuch.speciicdestina- tions tend to drive up. if we look at the rajasthan sector, we look at jaipur as a city. jaipur has had a huge inﬂux of supply, so there you to the topic of motivating hospital- ity to drive tourism, you are aware that taj has worked very hard to develop goa as a destination. it developed the destination and promoted it internationally. there was a lot of international inﬂow, and that spread over to domestic. therefore, now what is happening is that while international footfalls are dropping, domestic tourism has increased.oncethedestination takes up and becomes prominent, obviously, domestic travellers have higher access to it and they are able to utilise it, and enjoy the des- if you look at individual sector, let us say coorg, or corbett, or bekal, or guwahati. even if i look at these sectors, we look at these sectors, there is not too much of supply. we see that where there is not too much of supply, we are doing reasonably well over there, and the igures are looking up.,, rohit khosla tination more. that is what makes the difference. on goa and driving numbers through hospitality goa was put on the tourism map through a concerted effort so many years ago, and promoting it in dif- ferenttourismfairs,suchasitpo, wtm, and all the other internation- al fairs. we started off with getting so many chartered ﬂights, and we all know what has happened to the charter business. we also know what has happened to the business from the countries where the char- ters used to originate from. there has been a decline those econo- mies, so source markets have dried up. that, however, does not mean that interest in destinations like goa has gone down. it is just that economies of travel is not working out for certain people. if i have to take rajasthan, that is also a very important tourist destination, or if we take kerala, the interest over there for interna- tional tourism is very high, and hotel companies continue to work with government agencies like faith,wttc,andotherstojointly promote ‘incredible india’, working with the mot to develop destina- tions. we work with state tourism boards as well. forexample,weopenedanew hotel in guwahati, in itb recently. assam tourism had a booth and they were promoting the state, with kaziranga and other destinations, but taj played a key role over there to say that there are large domestic players who are also setting up footprints. therefore, it is important for promoting assam as a tourist destination in the international market. we are playing our role. we realise that we have made signiicantinvestmentsthere,so it becomes important for us to promote the destination. what it means to be more mature in terms of adrs i think we talk about it being fragmented and i totally agree. in fact, there is a very high level of frustration, and manav echoes my feeling that when you are growing double-digit in terms of volumes and occupancies then why are you scared of taking up your rates. and, i think it is for a couple of industry leaders to take a call and what really happens is that everybody follows. as we go ahead, we will see this happening. i think it already hap- pening. we are already seeing the indications of that – leading hotel companiesbecomingirmontheir rates–andiamquiteconident that right now we are at the cusp where the demand was much lesser than the supply, and today we are at a situation where the demand is growingmorethanthesupply.so, obviously, rates will grow, some people try to test the market, and some people like to play the role of follower, but there are people who play leaders. and i think they will inﬂuence the market. give it this year. i think 2017-18 is a year where people will look at the maturity of the market, and look at growing the rates, and i think 2018-19 will be the year which will show you the results that actually the market and the industry has matured. sanjay sharma, market vp, north india and nepal, marriott we need to start behaving like an unfragmented market; must hone the art of storytelling on branding exercise and large inventory and how it pans out in increasing tourism numbers in india, domestic and international the take on this is very simple. mar- riott international today is more or less the largest operator in india, not only in terms of brands and also in terms of room count. the sheer fact that we are in every segment of the market is in itself a testimony that we are not looking at only particular segment of the market. the merger withstarwood,bytakingovera bigger portfolio of luxury into the marriott portfolio where in certain markets we had more upper up- scale only available, now with thirty brands,andspeciicallygoingback to india, with 15-16 brands already operational and few more coming in the near future, we want to create space in every market segment… to bring in more business into the country. to create more tourism for the country, and bring in discipline into the market. i think the need of the hour is that we have been talk- ing too long and bragging ourselves being a fragmented market. the big change that today is needed is that a one big step where we start saying that we are no more a fragmented market. we want to work towards making it a mature market, and a mature market will only happen when there is a certain amount of discipline that comes into the market segments. taking cue from what manav said, as soon as you hit the 70% occupancy, depending on demand and supply, there is no logic of grow- ing only in single digit, in terms of your adr. that does not make any business logic, neither as an opera- tor nor as an owner. why you have a single-digit growth is because you have a fragmented market. it is a rat race. you are not ready to take risks, and you still continue to operate and everyone tries to see that they do not lose their market share. do we continue to worry about our market share, or do we con- tinue to worry about our quality? improving our stature in the market, bringing in more quality for tourism, and improving the tax structure for the government? if rates go up, taxes also go up. the government will have more resources to spend. on creating a larger canvas of tourism in the country there is something coming in my mind and i think it is, probably, a little bit interesting for me to put this across. i think we have been too busy creating headlines that we have had so many millions of travellers coming into the country on e-visa. we have created a lot of headlines that we have had sixteen percent growth, and 20 percent growth, in our tourism numbers, but i think in my opinion and a lot of opinion makers that i talk to, we have failed in creating trendlines rather than headlines. we need to start creating trendlines for tourism, and those trend lines come from areas when you have a story to tell. sanjay sharma we are not good storytellers at the moment. we need to become better storytellers. i will give you one small example. there is a very beautiful festival in punjab which i came acrossrecentlyinanantpursahib and it is called hola mohalla. it is one of the most fascinating events on planet earth. unfortunately, even if you go through whole of punjab, it is not being marketed the way it should have been. whereas a joint promotion strategy of promoting it as an event and creating a story behind it as an event in every state which happens. the government has been doing regulatorily what they are supposed to be doing, but the big change that today is needed is that a one big step where we start saying that we are no more a fragmented market. we want to work towards making it a mature market, and a mature market will only happen when there is a certain amount of discipline that comes into the market segments. ,, of an event. this is something which we need to address. on working in tandem with the government to promote tourism let me give you an example of something similar what we are saying that what can be done and what is being done. this unknown turf between delhi and gurgaon, a huge investment came, called dial – and with a humongous number of rooms, almost 3000 rooms in the plan which will eventually come. there was only one way to co-exist and work along with everyone. what we did along with other partners who are competitors, we created a consortium to drive mice into dail. so,thereisaconsortiumofnine hotels, and everyone wants to be a partofit.actually,theirstbigfruitof the big change that is needed is that we need to start saying that we are no more a fragmented market. may be, we should start think- ing of how we can create more events in every state and create a story behind them to try and weave them into a tourism blanket for the country. people go to a particular place for a reason. they go once in a lifetime to go see a monument, but they go again and again to be a part the consortium was they marketed to- gether and brought in the largest ever mice convention happening in april indial.thatistheirststep.rohit was mentioning that taj will market lucknow. i take a cue from here, elec- tion tourism in india is incredible. to me, who would think out of the box? election tourism in india.
h i c sa 20 17 15 steve borgia, co-founder, ecotourism society of india it is all about one big dream for a beautiful idea called india and we need to do it together. let us unleash india “we keep talking about india as a very incredible country but it is also very unlimited. many worlds in one country. iestablishedmyirstruraltourism project after my stint in un and i found a whole world in one village. after 20 years, we are talking about make in india but things have already been getting made here so maybe we need to rename the campaign, ‘remake in india’. we speak in about 2000 languages; write in 50; introduced the art of counting to the world; introduced air-mail to the world 12 years after the british introduced postal ser- vices, and a whole lot to come. development can destroy, too! ancient cultures, practices, lifestyle, history etc. are being a part of peo- ple and land even today. there are cultures, 450-500 years old, which are practiced year after year without a break in many villages. india travelled, created monuments, fes- tivals and experiences as old as the human civilisation. india is the only country that can sell emotion today. i hope the revolution continues and i think it is time we go in for a second revolution because without a revolution nothing happens in our country and i think the day should start today. what really went wrong? i think things went terribly wrong in the last 100 years. we have smashed monuments, stolen artefacts, threatened regions, lost villages, lost cultures and so forth. 3 years ago, i took a group of my friends from rajasthan to a place called chettinad, tamil nadu, and showed them a typical house in the village. today the mansion which is a typi- cal house over there lies in ruins. thedoorshavegonetosingapore, mumbai and delhi. the windows have gone. you can re-cycle and use every bit of these houses. development too destroys. you want to broaden a road, kick 100 temples, break statues, cut trees but innovation from our side can reverse such destructions after protest. there is a beautiful temple, nearly 150 years old, on the tanjore belt. the temple got broken and the statues were thrown away. i protested and took the concerned people to court butcouldnotstop.finally,ihadto buy those statues and put them in one of my palace hotels. the madras central prison, an 1837, 7 tonne gate. produced in birmingham and shipped all the way to india by the british. just because my cm was locked there for a day, she decided thatprisonshallnotstay.shebroke the prison and gave it to a dealer. i had to buy the door and now it is in my museum in mahabalipuram. similarly,oneofthebestpalacesever built in the southern part of india, called the mint palace, crafted in shekhawatibyrajasthanisculp- tors. each stone brought to chennai and set by chettinad craftsman. a four-storybeautifulpalace.some- body needed that pathway to gain entrance for a shopping mall they were building and the palace was broken. i got a stay but could not stop it,cametosupremecourtandlost. finally,ihadtoendupbuyingthat palace, remove it stone by stone and carry it 400 kms. away and it was kept in my garden. i did not know whattodo.finally,weerecteditin the village and it has now become thelobbyofoneofmyhotels.so, tourism in india is not about what you see but how you see it. infrastructure and service are the areas which need to be looked in to. if you believe this can happen then let us setup a responsible tourism promotion council. a pan-india organisation, headed ,, by area experts supported by a bureaucrat. it is all about one big dream for a beautiful idea called india and we need to do it together. steve borgia there is a reversion process. there are dark buildings, condemned and broken. you do not care for them andtheygobadandinallyitis deemed non-liveable and broken. yercaud, we say there is no water. the amount of construction the place has seen, of-course there will be no water. then it is deemed not good for human living and is thrown. labour goes away, coffee plantationsdie.so,whatwedid is that i created a hotel inside a 100-acre coffee plantation without cutting a single tree. the hotel had 100 rooms, was locate in a hill sta- tion, has a beautiful water treatment plant and a sewage treatment plant. now i have water in that single hotel to irrigate 600 acres of the coffee plantation. we produce the best coffee called tipperary and i export it to england. the tipperary coffee has a premium right from the days of the east india company. the hotel got awarded the 6th best idea for greening the world, by fortune magazine, and the 3rd best idea, incidentally, was the amazon for- est. thanks to rural poverty, many villages have been abandoned. so,ipickedup3beautifulvil- lages, restored them and launched something called the rural tourism societyofindia,waybackin1990. when i came back from the un and was wondering what to do in india, i found a big opportunity and today that hotel has 125 rooms. all those villages have been converted in to a beautiful hotel. not only the per capita income went up two times and now they say it is a village in a hotel. now, we have to look at sell- ing products where you can hear, touch and feel india. responsible tourism promotion council could address the lacuna the tourists must be taken as close as possible and given experiences like these. we need to give them immersion experiences. teach them to ride bullock carts, give them licences to ride bullock carts; teach them to drink coconut water with palm leaves; give them native food but give them excellent stay quality. we need to take the style to total na- tivity. if we can manage to achieve thesethings,theninallypeoplewill want to listen to our story. all that we need is a story to tell, history to connect and a wiz-kid to sell. in the goodolddays,therewasnowi-i, no brochures and yet the whole world came here. they took so much, yet we have so much to offer. now, india is a natural niche market. the past is a product and it will be the future. add responsibility to it and india will be an unprecedented country which is unique, interest- ing and having a price advantage. take tourism to under developed regions and sustainable tourism will automatically come in. tourism in india is not about what you see but how you see it. infrastructure and service are the areas which need to be looked in to. if you believe this can happen then let us setup a responsible tourism promotion council. a pan-india organisation, headed by area experts supported by a bureaucrat. it is all about one big dream for a beautiful idea called india and we need to do it together. let us unleash india. rakesh mathur, former president, itc welcomheritage & ec member, indian heritage hoteliers assc tourism in india is essentially about heritage. but what have we done about it? “let me tell you that i only discovered my country after i joined welcome heritage. i used to be ﬂy- ing in and out of big cities and it was only later that i went and saw what this country is all about and what is the fabulous resource of heritage that we have. tourism to india is essentially about heritage. but what have we done about it? how many people over here know that in the state of assam, between guwahati and a town called margherita, there are about 18 golf courses in 21 tea estates with about 18 beautiful country homes which are all dying a slow death. these are all heritage homes built during the early 20th century.similarly,icangiveyouan example of places like jageshwar or places like patal bhuvaneshwar. heritage homes in these cities are selling space to display election posters because they do not have the resources to maintain them. this is an actual fact. therefore, there is a disease somewhere we need to address urgently. i will stick to heritage hotels as a lot has been said about rural tourism etc. as you cannot de-link all these. heritage hotels are mostly essentially located in rural areas. nothing can be maintained or sus- tainedtillitisinanciallyproductive orproitable.letusstartwiththat premise. what are the problems of heritage hotels? the answer is very basic and there is no rocket science over here. let me begin with the problems and then i will also sug- gestsomequicksolutions.firstly, the cost of restoration and conver- sion is so high. i think everybody understands that these buildings were made hundreds of years ago, and therefore the entire infrastruc- ture, if it needs to be revived, the cost is much more expensive than setting up a new hotel. the second problem is that the title deeds are not clear. most of these heritage assets belong to what we call royalty and they were responsible for giving title deeds to others. in many cases, they did not give title deeds even to themselves. so,theyactuallyhavenopapers,this is an actual fact. now, where do you get these title deeds from? and if you do not have the title deeds, you are not eligible for any loans. change of land use. we have had cases where because some properties are being converted to hotels, the governments are insisting that you apply for clu from domestic to commercial. now, these are large land banks. the moment you say that you have to pay commercial fees for change of land use, it becomes totally unviable and unproductive. most of them are rural based and because of issues like lack of infrastructure, electricity, water problems, sewage problems, drain- age problems and of course lack of skilled man power in rural areas. there is a very interesting, small butverysigniicantthingthatwe have been talking about for the last so many years. the bars and the we need to create an equity fund through some special purpose vehicle of about 100 crores whereby they can get investment support as i said a lot of them cannot entitle themselves to loans. ,, rakesh mathur restaurants in these hotels are not commercial. they do not have a walk-in customer. it does not make any sense for a hotel owner in a village to pay license fee as per com- mercial bar rates. lack of resources to market individual holdings just becausetheydonotitglobalnorms and of course lack of individual resources to impact the environment. what are the solutions? i think we need to constitute a national heritage hotels and tourism promotion board to formulate policy along with the indian heritage hotel association and it should be common to all the states because currently policies vary from state to state. we need to package in- centives and subsidies to incentivise them to revive their properties and give them tax holidays. we need to give them considerations in thing like clu and bar licenses and so on and so forth. we need a consistent luxury tax policy across all states. we need to create an equity fund through some special purpose vehicle of about 100 crores whereby they can get investment support as i said a lot of them cannot entitle themselves to loans. sincewespokeaboutdomestic tourism being important, most herit- age hotels are connected through roads and every time you build a new highway, it becomes a high street with building on both sides. no modern, western or enlightened country allows buildings on high- ways and travelling on these roads is dangerous. we need to make road travel a lot safer in these places. the railways for some reason reduced thenumberofirstclasscabinsand bogies. can we not introduce a nice air conditioned tourist chair car in every train across the country to encourage the discerning traveller to go to these places? and of-course we need to do something to introduce skill training institutes in these areas which will lead to local employment generation. as far as marketing is concerned, we need a central fund to promote heritage hotels. you can use the heritage hotels association as a nodal body. we have just come up with a concept of the indian herit- age festival and mart where i think we need government support. this is a very different concept where the buyer instead of coming to a stall where the owner is sitting and trying to sell experiential tourism, we are taking the buyer to hotels where they can actually experience. we have created 27 circuits and i would request that something be done to promote this kind of an initiative. lastly, i want to add one more point, that a lot of heritage buildings and cities are occupied by the gov- ernment and are dying a slow death. we should do something to convert them in to heritage tourism assets. youcanbuildnewoficesandcon- vert these in to some kind of tourism asset including hotels.
16 h i c sa 20 17 radisson red’s positioning and appeal will attract young and discerning indian travellers andreas flaig, executive vice president, development, asia paciic, carlson rezidor believes that radisson red has all that it takes to attract young, tech-savvy and adventurous indian travellers. he asserts that the brand will add strength to the group’s presence in india. by 2020, carlson rezidor expects to have 60 radisson red hotels worldwide. about half of these hotels will be in asia paciic and many will be in india. we are conident that radisson red’s positioning and lifestyle appeal make it the right brand for india’s tech-savvy, adventurous and price-conscious younger generation. the brand is a great it for high-traic urban markets such as delhi, mumbai, bengaluru, pune, hyderabad, kolkata and chennai, where demand is well supported by demographics. ,, many will be in india, where the growing millennial population is one of the largest segments in the country. radisson red is an innovative hospitality concept with a focus on design and the technologies of tomorrow. it addresses changing consumer behavior and delivers a hotel experience that is enhanced by art, music and fashion. weareconidentthatradis- son red’s positioning and lifestyle appeal make it the right brand for india’s tech-savvy, adventur- ous and price-conscious younger generation.thebrandisagreatit forhigh-traficurbanmarketssuch as delhi, mumbai, bengaluru, pune, hyderabad, kolkata and chennai, where demand is well supported by demographics. and for property owners, radis- son red offers a lower per-key with bestech hospitalities. accelerating the growthofthebrandinasiapaciic,radisson red kuala lumpur city center was signed lastoctober.the166-roomnewbuilthotelis strategically located in close proximity to the icon twin towers in kuala lumpur, malaysia. we also see great development potential in india for our midscale park inn® by radis- son brand, across primary, secondary and tertiary markets. given the brand’s construc- tioncostanddevelopmentspeciications,it isaparticularlygooditforsecondaryand tertiary markets where an infrastructural renaissance is currently taking place. accessible and inclusive, park inn by radisson is a bright, bold, fresh, uncompli- cated and friendly brand, with unexpected touches of contemporary design. to cater to the preferences of the indian market, we haveine-tunedthespeciicsofthisother- wise limited-services brand to include an all-day dining restaurant, banqueting options and room service as well. we celebrate the entranceintoanewmarket,srilankawith radisson red is an innovative hospitality concept with a focus on design and the technologies of tomorrow. executive vp, development, asia pacific, carlson rezidor andreas flaig we are in the business of curating guest experiences and creating memories that solidify into guest loyalty. guests come back to stay at our hotels repeatedly because we have successfully delivered compelling propositions. in a crowded market, we interest and engage increasingly sophisticated consumers through innovation and careful positioning. today’s travelers have complex expecta- tions and as the guardians of a differentiated brand portfolio spanning all major segments, we recognize the need to have the right brand, addressing the right audience, in the right place. in anticipation of the rise of the millen- nial segment, carlson rezidor developed the upscale, lifestyle select brand, radisson red, which appeals to millennial-minded travelers, across age groups. the radisson red brand is certainly gaining traction and we can anticipate several new hotels in top destinationsacrossasiapaciicemergingin the coming months. construction cost than traditional upscale hotels. radisson red can be developed as a standalone hotel or as part of a mixed-use development, where the hotel can be syner- gizedwiththeoficeandretailcomponents. the return per square foot on a radisson red is expected to be strong in a mixed- use development. in addition, the brand’s multi-functionalapproachandeficientuse ofspacealsoreduceoperatingcostsignii- cantly, driving higher margins. by 2020, carlson rezidor expects to have 60 radisson red hotels worldwide. about halfofthesehotelswillbeinasiapaciicand it will not be long before we unveil india’s veryirstradissonredhotel,nowunder development, as part of our collaboration the groundbreaking ceremony of park inn by radisson colombo in january this year. the 199-room hotel is scheduled to open in q2, 2019. inindia,thegroupcurrentlyhasivepark inn by radisson hotels under development and seven that are already in operation, including park inn by radisson bilaspur and park inn by radisson amritsar. with park inn by radisson and radisson red, carlson rezidor is well positioned to meet the changing expectations of the indian market and to fuel the group’s continued expansion in india. government further relaxes e-visa norms; medical and business visa included in purview starting april 1, the visa regime in india has been further re- laxed by the government. the move is aimed at attracting more tourists and business travellers in to the country. here is a list of changes approved by the cabinet: ● with effect from april 1, e-visa has been sub-divided into 3 catego- ries – e-tourist visa, e-business visa and e-medical visa. till now, e-visa was only for tourists ● e-visa facility has been extended to nationals of 161 countries for entry through 24 airports (earlier granted through 16 airports) and three ports: cochin, goa and mangalore. ● the window for application under e-visa scheme has been increased from 30 days to 120 days and duration of stay on e-visa has been increased from 30 days to 60 days with double entry on e-tourist and e-business visa and triple entry on e-medical visa. ● separateimmigrationcounters and facilitation desks to assist medical tourists have been pro- vided at airports in delhi, mumbai, kolkata, chennai, bengaluru and hyderabad. ● the multiple-entry tourist and business visas for a period of 5 years will now be available to nationals of most of the countries. upon urgent requests, business visa and medical visa will be granted within 48 hours of application. ● 94 indian missions having bio- metric enrolment facilities have started giving 5-year long-term tourist and business visa from march. the remaining missions will provide this facility in due course. ● a new category of visa titled intern (i) visa has been rolled out with effect from march 1, 2017 to a foreigner intending to pursue intership in indian companies, educational institutions and ngos,subjecttocertainchecks and conditions. the period of visa is restricted to the duration of internship programme or one year, whichever is less. the intern visa will be granted immediately after completion of graduation/post- graduation. ● intern visa, however, will be is- sued with prior clearance from the home ministry in case of internship inngosorinternshipinvolving visit to protected and restricted areas. ● another new category of visa, titledilm(f)visahasalsobeen introduced with maximum dura- tion of one year with multiple entry facility. ● the minimum salary limit of for grant of employment visa, which is presentlyus$25,000perannum, hasalsobeenmodiied.thiswill facilitate foreign nationals engaged as teaching faculty by the central higher educational institutions.
h i c sa 20 17 17 andreas flaig evp, development t: +65 6511 9290 firstname.lastname@example.org zubin saxena vp, development t: +91 124 4723 312 email@example.com
18 h i c sa 20 17 opportunities and challenges in india, ashwini kakkar in his keynote at hosi speaking at hosi, ashwini kakkar, executive vice chairman, mercury travels, gave an industry insiders insight in to the challenges and opportunities available in the indian scenario. to reach 2 billion international arrivals around theworld.theseiguresaregoingtoleadto a business of 10 trillion dollars. putting this in context, when we understand that the united stateseconomy,everyyear,isa14trillion-dollar economy.so,ataworldwidelevel,thetravel and tourism business is moving in the direction of becoming a 10 trillion-dollar business, per annum.onthedomesticfront,lastyearwehad 1.1 billion trips across the country. but in the next 10 years, that number is going to reach 2.3 billion domestic trips. part of the reason why this is also happening is the increase in afﬂuence. while the people who live below the poverty line are decreasing, afﬂuence is rising and the number of households that have substantial incomes will go up from 24 million to 49 million. these are very large numbers, close to 300 million people will join the elite and the afﬂuent. looking at some more trends, corporate travel, which is today a 30 billion-dollar business in india, is likely to continue growing at 7.6% per annum compounded over the next 10 years. in-bound, which has currently about 8 million visitors coming in to india, is likely to cross 20 million in the next 10 years. asia, which today accountsfor21%ofglobaltraficislikelytomove from21%to33%.one-thirdofallthearrivalsand departures in the world are going to be from asia. now talking about the impact of the vari- ous segments of our industry on our business, i think let me start with the airline industry. india just became the third largest domestic market for airlines in the world. we just displaced japan by crossing 100 million passengers in 1 year andwearejustbehindtheunitedstatesand china. and if you combine the international and domestictrafic,thenwearetiedatthefourth position with the united kingdom at 131 million passengers annually. while these numbers are fairly substantive and the growth patterns are very high, it is interesting to know that they are onlyat23%ofchina’straficandabout12%of theunitedstate’strafic.considerthattheunited statesispossiblyone-fourthofourpopulation butweareat12%ofthattrafic. if we look at the growth factor in the last few years, i think ltc’s have led the way. there is indigo which has grown at over 40% per an- num on a cumulative growth factor and today it controls almost 40% of the market share. if international is to be looked at, jet airways has grown at 28% per annum cumulatively and they control a substantial second part of the business both internationally and domestically. what is most interesting from our point of view is the future orders of aircrafts because that effects our business directly. today all the aircrafts ﬂying in the country number 430. but the number of planes on order are 783 and these planes are going to get delivered within the next two and a half years. imagine what that is going to do toourhotelbusiness.ifyoulookatspicejet and others who are waiting in the wings, there is a plan to order 250 more planes that will get ordered within the next 6-8 months and the gov- ernment just announced that 33 unused regional airports will be put in to play and ﬂights will start connecting to these centres very quickly. let me come down now to our focus industry which is the hotel industry. in the last 20 years the supply side has gone up from 18,000 rooms in 120 hotels to 1,15,000 rooms in 887 hotels. this is good growth but when you compare it to downtown manhattan, we probably are still at about 40% of that number. these are really small numbers but going forward in the next 4 years, it is hoped that 60,000 more rooms will be added to this huge capacity and a lot of this activity has been happening in tier-1, tier-2 cities. i believe that the industry is now looking at a virtuous cycle of prosperity.forthenextfewyears,wecanexpect a really positive cycle for our industry. leisure, which most people decry, produced better areas than 5 star deluxe hotels but unfortunately the oc- cupancies were much lower. this whole growth has been due to a large number of factors and ac- cording to me these factors are here to stay.” ashwini kakkar by anagat choudhary “let me start in a completely crazy way. let us look at the world, in the same fashion that the american military looks at it. what kind of impression does the american military have of the world that we live in? they call it a vuca world. it implies that the world is volatile, uncertain, complex andambiguous.thisishowtheydeinethe world. but why do we need to worry about what the american military thinks of us? the news is that large corporates are now starting to come around to that world view and building it in to their strategic plans and building it in to the way that they are now looking at business. and ours is the industry that gets most affected by this vuca world. we haven’t even thought about it consciously but if anybody in the world sneezes, it is the travel and tourism industry that captures a cold. if you look at what is going on, viruses, wars, terrorism etc. all kinds of things are rearing their ugly heads and in that whole environment, all of us are called upon to manage risks, to solve problems, to plan forward and to look after our customers in any kind of situation as the business moves forward. it is this ability that all of us have which when coupled with an asset like strategy, is likelytodeinesustainabilityofourwonproper- ties, companies and of the industry as a whole. even in this vuca world, i think we are hugely blessed. why i think so is because we belong to the fastest growing business opportunity in the world. there are major mega-trends that are around us and we do not consciously think of them but i thought it may be a good idea to just enumerate those mega-trends so that you have a fair idea of what is going on. theirstmega-trendiwanttotalkaboutis the billion travellers that we had around the world in 2015. international arrivals were 1 billion passengers in that year. but going forward, while it took centuries to get to that 1 billion number, in the next 10 decades that number is going it’s luxury at hicsa with anuraag bhatnagar we catch up with anuraag bhatnagar to discuss the mood of luxury and how his new portfolio as multi- property vice president – luxury, marriott india is shaping up. under his charge are currently three properties in the country: the ritz carlton bangalore, the st. regis mumbai and w goa. brands. at w, globally we start with the design and architecture of the building. it is a design led brand. it is eclectic, quirky and has a sense edginess which is translated even to our tal- ent. we have a service core value of whatever wheneverandthewinsiderprogramme.she is the person who has an intuitive sense of service, who delivers the whatever whenever experience. this is beyond a concierge or a butler. we focus on the mood, the lighting and the music. we are probably the only hotel company which has a music programmer on yourpayrole.atthestregiswehaverituals such as champagne sabering, afternoon tea and an art programme. the ritz carlson is all aboutservingladiesandgentlemen.ourjob and the job of my team is to ensure that we live these experiences and bring them to life every day for our guests. regardingtheclientproile,wehave seen clients having a different trip persona in different locations. the same guest who willstayatastregisonabusinesstripwill choseawforavacationtogoa.overallthe luxury clients are not necessarily driven by their net worth either but more by the level of exposure and the desire to want to relive and savour luxury experiences. in india, we have an advantage that culturally service is part of our dna and value. this is why our home-grown luxury chains have done exceedingly well and have become benchmarks globally. when we entered the market, we took the advantage of our home-grown talent which already had the luxury trappings and yet had the positive approach and outlook and the genuine desire to serve and please without having the sense of servitude. today, our best challenges and opportuni- ties is having the next generation associates servingthenextgenerationguests.our departmental heads are mostly millennials, born in the late 80s or 90s. most of our associ- ates are also in that age group. also, many of our gusts are of the same age. we now have millennials, being led by millennials, serving millennials. which is fantastic to see because they get it. it makes my job much easier because i may or may not get it but my team gets it. the challenges this comes with are high aspirational desires and sometimes our work life balance is not ideal. post integration we have become not just the largest operator globally with 5700 hotels and growing, we have also become the largest luxury operator in the world. this necessitates a different level of attention to detail and a dedicated team to ensure that we live not just our core values but maintain our positioning at the premium luxury operator here. speakingfurtheronpostintegration,ibe- lievethebeneitsfaroutweighthechallenges. initially there was some apprehension but mar- riott as a company really cares for its people and they walk the talk. earlier our biggest challenge was managing the aspirations of our young and restless workforce but now we have enough opportunities. we expect our attrition ratetocomedown.secondlytherearetremen- dousbeneitsintermsofsuccessionandcareer planning. the integration took place, from a guest point of view with zero disruption. today you have access to the best of both worlds. we are making more progress than we envisaged andithinkjusttheirstquarterresultsacross the globe have been phenomenal. up next we have, in the pipeline, we have three other openings which should happen in the next 18-24 months and another 2 open- ings in 24-36 months. this includes the signed deals we have for the ritz carlton mumbai, ritz carlton pune and ritz carlton new delhi. there is a w coming up in mumbai.” anuraag bhatnagar by priyaanka berry elaborating further he adds, in the luxury segment, all three operational hotels, we have seen a high double digitgrowthyearonyear.thest regis has seen a growth of almost 20% in revpar driven by both occupancy and adr. wgoahasbeenagamechanger.intheirst month, it upstaged established hotels in both northandsouthgoaandwiscurrently trading at an extremely top position in terms of the revpar and adr. it has really taken the luxury segment by storm in the city. and the ritz carlton in bangalore is also showing high double-digit growth year on year. “i think today india as a market has really evolved into a luxury market, given the aspirational value and the growth of the high-net worth individuals year on year and most importantly the level of awareness and exposure that the millennials have and the fact that india’s outbound is so strong. they experience these products internationally and now they have easy access in india. we are extremely positive and see this continu- ing in the coming years. ourclienteleismixed.itisnotjustthe youngergeneration.butatthestregis mumbai for example, four days of the week is thequintessentialstregisguest,butthenon the weekends the mood of the hotel changes and we attract a younger audience as we have some of the best night clubs in the city. like- wise, in w goa, almost 60% of the clientele is from the domestic market and they are paying top of the line rates for the experiences. allourbrandsareexperientialled.of course, it is important to get the product and the services right, but what we aspire to is creating and crafting experiences which are driven by rituals and values in each of our
h i c sa 20 17 19 millennials set to deine and set future trends for the industry, says nikhil nath speaking at hosi, nikhil nath, founder and ceo, knowcross solutions shared his views about how the industry and in-fact the world is going to look at by 2030. then wake up. pretend you are in 2030 and we are looking at what’s going on around us. to start with, india is going to be the 3rd largest economy in the world. that means that it will be three times the size it is today. imagine the kind of wealth creation that is going to happen between now and then. depending on which scenario you believe, the number of planes in the sky are going to double if not triple. tourism, no surprise, is going to double in size. that doubling though, will not be proportionate through- out the world. asia is going to be one-third of the world market, which is huge. speakingaboutproperties,idonotthink that it is only about airbnb alone. i think it is about the power of disruption. whether it is anairbnboranoyo,itcertainlyshowsthe power of what disruption can do. airbnb has more many to spend than any single hotel chainintheworld.so,ifyouprojectout, airbnb still ends up on top. by 2030, airbnb willnotbetheonlyplayerontheield.there are going to be a number of such companies having the same amount of money. book- ing hotel rooms is going to get completely automatedwiththeintegrationofartiicial intelligence. technology will ensure that the entire travel experience, be it booking hotels or ﬂights, will become seamless and custom- ised for individuals. there is not going to be a supermarket of rooms anymore. hotels are going to price themselves for each individual traveller and they are going to base that on the travellers history. another thing that is about to happen is that rooms will not be sold by number of nights. bookings will get more ﬂexible and we will be able to book rooms for however long we want, in context of the number of hours. i would say that we will have around 8-10 staff members per hotel due to automa- tion. everything else will be a part of the ecosystem. there will not be any permanent staff but on-demand staff, much like an uber cab. people will be looking for unique travel experiences and will be looking for these kind of traits as the millennials are about to bericherthananypreviousgeneration.only if you have a unique product will you able to have some control over your pricing. you will have to reskill and relearn in order to keep up with the present generation who are all set to be the leaders of the world. anyone who has ever said that change is not going to happen has been mistaken.” nikhil nath by anagat choudhary “one of the things that struck me when i joined this industry was that somehow this industry was getting its lunch eaten and had not opened up to the fact that the mouse was eating the lunch. themousebeingtheotas.theindustry was aware and did nothing about this. i think it is fair to ask that has this industry re- ally learnt to look at the disruption and feel threatened? do any of you guys feel threat- enedbyairbnboranoyorightnow?ifnot, fortune hotels: let fortune take you places one of the fastest growing hotel chains in the country, fortune hotels with 61 signed properties, more than 4500 rooms spread across 50 cities in india, is operating 43 hotels at present. while providing business and leisure travellers a comfortable sojourn, it has won accolades for being the best ‘irst class full service business hotel’ chain. a wholly-owned subsidiary of itc ltd, fortuneparkhotelsltdwascreated to cater to the mid-market to upscale segment in business and leisure des- tinations.today,thefortunebrandhasmade its presence felt across the length and breadth of the country and is widely recognized for the quality of its service. the chain operates throughclearlydeinedsub-brands-fortune select,fortunepark,fortuneinnandfortune resort.fromcapitalsofvariousstates,big and small metros to bustling business towns, it has mapped out a growth plan to cut a wide swathe across the country. its strategy rests on competitive pric- ing and full-service without compromising on quality. giving a boost to its appeal are convenient locations, well-appointed rooms that are tastefully designed, modern décor, excellentcuisine,eficientserviceandstate- of-the-art facilities. fortunebranddrawsitsstrengthfrom the proud lineage-itc hotels, which is a pioneer in the hospitality industry in india. as it continues its sweeping growth through itswelldeinedsub-brands,thefocusof fortunehotelsisholisticinitsdevelopment. the properties are being set up in major metros, mini metros, state capitals and busi- ness towns. each hotel is created to suit the business needs of a particular environment leadingtoaperfecteconomicit,andwith each property taking its roots in one location it further opens up the possibilities at another level in a neighboring hub of development. fortunehotelshasundoubtedlyestablished itselfasaleadingirstclass,fullservicebusi- ness hotel chain and it plans to maintain this position by following a balanced approach suresh kumar towards growth, expansion, brand exten- sions and providing the same assured quality of product and service across the country. the last year saw the addition of 2 new hotelstothebouquetoffortunehotels–the irsthotelinthecityofbhubaneswar-for- tuneparksishmoandthethirdfortunein goa-fortunemiramar. fortune park sishmo, bhubaneswar fortuneparksishmohasbeentastefully designed as a contemporary hotel that offers a wide range of facilities and amenities for theguests.strategicallylocatedintheheart of bhubaneswar - the temple city of india, fortune hotels has grown exponentially in the past 9-10 years. the company that was established with a clear mandate of being a hotel management company, redeined its vision in 2007, of unfurling a fortune at every 180 km, to cater to the mid-market to upscale hotel segment. today, we have come closer to realizing our vision and i feel truly happy and proud to have been a part of this growth.,, fortunepark sishmohaseasy connectivity to the airport and the railway sta- tion. the hotel is very near to the famous temples includingshri lingaraj temple and the commer- cial centre of the city which make it a preferred destination for the leisure as well as business traveller. the hotel features 72 well-appointed rooms,orchid– a multi-cuisine restaurant offer- ingalldaydining,neptune‒bar&lounge that serves excellent spirits and snacks in a contemporarysettingandtheorientalpa- vilion – serving the best of chinese and thai cuisines.otherofferingsatthehotelinclude highspeedwi-ficonnectivity,swimming pool, well-equipped gymnasium and 24 hour currency exchange. the hotel also offers various options for meeting and banquet requirements for up to 150 guests. fortune miramar, goa locatedintheheartofpanajicity,fortune miramar is aesthetically designed to infuse the goan vibes in accordance with modern-day amenities to make for a delightful stay. the hotel features 45 beautifully-furnished rooms and are complete with modern amenities to complement the taste of the new-age traveller. to add to its charm, the property is situated is at an advantageous location, just 200 metres from the famous miramar beach and well-connected to the airport, local shopping district, casinos, beaches and other areas of interest. thediningoptionsatthehotelincludeor- chid – a multi-cuisine restaurant with all day dining,neptune–bar&loungeandfortune deli – offering confectionery and delicious breads. the other offerings at the hotel include a gymnasium, swimming pool and a fully-equipped board room for conducting conferences, discussions and brainstorming sessions for up to 10 guests. mrsureshkumar,managingdirector, fortunehotelssays,“fortunehotelshas grown exponentially in the past 9-10 years. the company that was established with a clear mandate of being a hotel management company,redeineditsvisionin2007,of unfurlingafortuneatevery180km,tocater to the mid-market to upscale hotel segment. today, we have come closer to realizing our vision and i feel truly happy and proud to have been a part of this growth.” fortunehotelshassuccessfullydrawnon the strength, resources and talent pool of the itc hotels brand to extend these synergies to a wider audience - all at a very attractive price, thus creating ‘affordable alternative’ for the end user. it provides the customer a perfectcombinationofeficientserviceand great value, thereby creating the distinctive advantage. fordetails,visit:www.fortunehotels.in
20 h i c sa 20 17 hotel industry today and what to expect in 2017, achin shares hvs data understanding growth, supply and markets across segments and cities achin khanna, mrics, managing director consulting and valuation - south asia, hvs, takes us on a journey of graphs and charts and across market segments on the industry at large across india and what hotel owners really look at. next we look at market snapshots *gross yield. *net yield gross yield net yield city bengaluru chennai new delhi gurugram goa the luxury segment. another parameter is gross ﬂoor area per key – the total built up area divided by the total number of rooms. here the economy segment would be 350-450sqft; midmarket 600-700sqft while luxury would be over 1250sqft. another good yardstick is the rooms to total area ratio. economy would be 70-75% (there isn’t a spa, large banqueting, largef&boptionsetc); mid-market would be 65-70% while luxury would be 45-50%. base room size is another good criterion. economy is 15-18sqm, while mid-market is 24-28sqm and luxury is over 50sqm. hyderabad jaipur kolkata mumbai pune coming to how hotels have performed by positioning in the last year. what is interest- ing to note is that occupancy is not that different across segments, it ranges around 63-67% and arr from 1900 to 10400 (na- adr (2016/17)* occupancy (2016/17)* exising supply proposed supply 5700 4775 6600 6500 7700 4800 4950 5750 7800 4150 69% 64% 70% 69% 73% 61% 61% 69.5% 77.5% 68% 11799 7787 14,035 5323 5596 6262 5040 2701 13,054 6287 3490 2312 2568 1371 1856 788 854 2053 1625 1434 tionalaverages).fromarevparstandpoint there is not a whole lot that is differentiating an economy, mid-market, upscale hotel. this is because of our strategy of discounting and rate wars. value proposition has taken a back seat. the select few who said we will main- tain the sanctity and integrity of the arr are those with higher revpar and they have not lost their occupancy either. have great scope for growth and increase in numbers. inherently our business is cyclical. and currently we are in an upward trend. 2015 onwards we saw trickles of improvement. it is our view that this upcycle could well continuetill2020.occupancy will grow before the adrs do in a moderate fashion. coming to indian business destinations, some 54% of the destinations in the country primarily cater to business de- mand whereas 46% are geared towards leisure. while 20% of the rooms in the country are for leisure and 80% are geared for business demand. we are pri- marily a corporate commercial market. we looked at the top 25 hotels by adr and 23 of 25 are leisure hotels and their occu- pancywasinetoowithahigherrevpar.so, they do make money. the bottom line here is that there are things happening in the leisure segment also. we are also a leisure destination and these hotels are performing well. howtoreallydeine and categorize a 5-star hotel? what is the star clas- siication?therearealotof parameters one could look at.suchasdevelopment cost per key. this is the cost per room to build and does not include the cost of land or cost of borrow- ing.foraneconomyhotel, this could range from 18-25 lakhs, for mid-market 45-55 lakhs and over 150 lakhs in achin khanna by priyaanka berry starting with the big numbers on the 10yearoccupancyadrtrend.safeto say that about 65% occupancy was achievedinthelastiscal.firsttime in close to a decade we have reached this igureanditisthethirdorfourthconsecutive year that we have seen an occupancy jump across the nation. adr hasn’t moved much yet, but what is important is that it has not declined in the past two years either. coming to growth of supply, in 1983 india irstcrosseditsbenchmarkof10,000rooms in the branded and organized sector with 9 operators. in 2009 we crossed 50,000 rooms with 36 operators and by 2016 came to 1,13,622 rooms with 50+ operators across the country. projection for 2021 is 1,52,000 rooms. while this may seem like a large number, in a global comparison, we are certainly not saturated and marriott sees exponential growth in the mid-tier segment in india given half of marriott’s total properties are in the mid-segment category, its focus on the segment is amply relected. it is expected to be a game-changer for the hotel company, and will ill in the gap between india’s luxury and budget segment hotels. the demand for branded, quality lodg- ing in tier 2 and 3 markets in india offers a great opportunity to hotels companies with mid-tier brands. marriott international, post its historic merger withstarwoodhotels&resortslastseptem- ber, has in its kitty four distinct brands in the mid-tier segment (or select service segment). theseincludecourtyardbymarriott,fairield bymarriott,fourpointsbysheratonandthe savvy aloft hotels. together the footprint is 32 hotels and nearly 40 in the pipeline, to open in the next few years. given that the total foot- print of marriott in india stands at 84 hotels at present, the mid-tier constitutes nearly half of that; reﬂecting the increased focus on this segment for the company. industry experts also agree that most de- velopers favour the mid-tier segment as these are usually quicker to open, moderate in size and scale, have a reduced cost of construc- tion and resonate in markets which are now demanding branded, quality lodging or have so far been ‘under-hoteled’. moreover, these brands also offer distinct lifestyle experi- ences for stays, meetings and functions and hence are great options for cost-conscious corporates and frequent mid-management business travelers. even for leisure travelers looking for great value, these hotels are fast becoming the preferred choice. a growing middle class has created demand for afford- able avenues for the domestic traveller. the need for affordable quality lodging is fuelling the growth of hotels in this segment. formarriott,whiletheirgrowthstrategy is across all segments, insiders believe it is the mid-tier segment that is a ‘game changer’. this is the segment that has and continues to script the growth story for marriott in india. while india boasts of great domestic brands in the luxury and the budget hotel segment, there exists a gap between luxury hotels and quality mid-tier hotels in the country and marriott’s select service brands illthatgapperfectlywithbrandslikecourt- yardbymarriott,fairieldbymarriott,aloft andfourpointsbysheratonhotelsstrongly positioned in this space. and for those who feel the mid-tier segment cannot be stylish or glamorous, walkintoafairieldoranaloftandyou will be surprised. each brand under the marriott portfolio has a distinct personality and a unique dna and caters to a certain psychographic or lifestyle. gen y’s hotel of choice, aloft delivers the latest in tech- nological advances, ensuring that today’s savvy travellers are always plugged in and connected.fourpointsbysheratononthe other hand, is a brand that understands the needs of the business traveler – an uncom- plicated friendly approach to hospitality and select service brands under marriott courtyard by marriott fairfield inn & suites four points by sheraton aloft hotels 13 4 10 5 service – all at a great value. courtyard by marriott, the team will help you put ‘more playinyourstay’andafairieldbymarriott hotel is designed to provide both business and leisure guests with just what they need to make travel uncomplicated and successful. seenasgame-changers,developersinindia understand and appreciate the penchant for innovation which makes the brands more competitive and poised to play well in this fast evolving market.
h i c sa 20 17 21 what diferentiates a gm from a super gm what constitutes and the qualities that are needed to be a super gm. the panellists came to an agreement that it is the ability to successfully multi-task, to think one step ahead as well as the personal characteristics and traits of an individual? by anagat choudhary resources to achieve what you want to achieve. ashish jakhanwala, md & ceo, samhi todaywearetalkingaboutsupergms.so,how doyoureallytalkaboutasupergm?isitabout the personality of the individual or is there a process that can be followed and which can be successfully implemented across the spectrum whichcanhelphonesupergms?letushave a conversation with our super gms here about whattheythinkisasupergmandhowisit different from a normal everyday gm? tristan beau de lomenie, gm delegate, pullman & novotel delhi aerocity asupergm,beforeanything,isasuperman. tomeasupergmissomeonelikeacircus manwhocanjuggleat-least5balls.oneisthe owner,anotheroneisthecorporateofice,one is the guests, this is followed by the staff and yet another one being the person’s own personal life.andyet,thegmhastodeliveraproit,has to be aware of what is going on in the market, should have excellent business acumen and have the ability to deliver to the expectations of the company. you either have it or you don’t have it. it is your personality, your charisma, your vision, how well you can see one step ahead of the others. it is also about how well you can use the organisation and pool in the devendra bharma, executive vp, oberoi hotels & resorts mumbai to begin with, you have to be a normal person. i do not thing that in order to be a supergm,onehastobeextraordinary.one just needs to have immense passion for this business and it is a growing process. it takes years and years of work, detailing, learning thebusinessandiirmlybelievethatthe mantra should be to learn a new thing every- day. putting your best forward is the key, it might seem like a basic but is very important. also, it is very importance to enjoy what you are doing. it seems easier said than done but if one has to enjoy meeting people, inter- acting with team members and raising the standards.asupergmmusthavetheability to leave the past behind, look ahead. the supergmcannotgetusedtomediocrityand must raise the bar. it is extremely important to continuously concentrate on your own operations and not just look at the competi- tor because i think over a period of time you have got to just sense how good you are. sunjae sharma, area director - western india, hyatt hotels corporation; gm, grand hyatt mumbai when we talk about a super gm, we need to see what are the expectations from this identity? the expectations are from the asset management, the owner, the guests, from yourcolleagues,thecorporateoficeand fromyourself.so,letustakethednaofall these people and put it in a blender. the one dna that comes out still does not make a supergm.apersonwhohasthesequalities, is the person who looks at the dna, picks up the particular residue of what is required in a particular situation and applies it to that situa- tion.yet,thatdoesnotconstituteasupergm. asupergmisapersonwhocanactuallybe available to people, to care for them and be there for them and replicate what he has got in the people who are around him. that is whatmakesapersonasupergmbecause that is how you spread talent. you need to need to satisfy your moral responsibility of creatingandmakingpeoplelikeasupergm. sanjeev pahwa, sr. vp operations - south asia, carlson rezidor hotel group putting it in one line, it would be a charis- matic leader, one who is very well informed, takes total ownership and uses common sense. i think if you can do this, most proba- bly you will be able to deliver to expectations and as long as you can deliver to expecta- tions,ithinkyouareasupergm.ithinkitis the individual that matters. you could have the best education, training and background but if it is not in you, then the rest of it will not help.youcouldbeagmbutnotasupergm. farhat jamal, sr. vp operations - western india & africa, taj hotels palaces resorts safaris i think being a general manager is one of the mostdificultjobsthatyoucanhave.itislike beingailmdirector.whenyouaredirecting ailm,youhavethiswholetaskinfrontof you.youhavetoindactors,talentacrossthe spectrumandthenyoumakeailmforthe audience to see, which is our guests in our case. how do you make sure that everybody performs and that you get the best out of the team?thesupergmissomeonewhogetsthe best out of people. a person who can make sure that the team members are compliment- ing each other, enjoying what they are doing and giving in their best performances. 89% of our colleagues in hotels are on stage most of the time, they are being watched by people. they need to be great performers and that performance must not come out of being under pressure but passionately doing what theyaredoing.ithinkthesupergmsjobis to get the best out of these people, identify those stars and make sure that they excel and understand that unless you love your job, you canneverbeasupergm. the importance of loyalty point programs speaking with sudhir gupta, founder & ceo, tlc relationship management, the panellists speak on the importance of loyalty programs and the strategies needed to ensure that the programs reap the beneits that they are intended for. excerpts from the discussion. vikas ahuja, sr. vp marketing, the oberoi group basically, we have two brands, the trident and theoberoi.forboththesebrands,wehavegot differentstrategies.forthetrident,wehave something called the trident privilege that has been up and running for the past 9 years. this is the program that incorporates the three tiers and various options to earn and burn and variousschemedivisions.butfortheoberoi brand, we have not had a loyalty program and the rationale for this is that that at the upper end of the country’s spectrum, you do not neces- sarily need a loyalty program. loyalty at this spectrumisdeinedbycustomerexperience. talkingabouttheoberoi,basicallythereare two things we look at as a small 10 hotel chain. being a small hotel chain, one thing that works for us is ﬂexibility. we have been very clear that it is one of our strengths and we have to play to that strength. when i say ﬂexibility, it is simple things. we have rules but we ourselves can break those rules. waiver of conditions, extension of days and so forth. the fact is that we have this ability and we must use it to our advantage. we, along with experience can also offer personalisation. it is a much larger and holistic experience. rajshree bakshi, vp marketing, taj hotels palaces resorts safaris we went through a major change in our loyalty program in 2017. we ran the re-birth campaign which was actually the re-birth of our loyalty program which included perks like no blackout days and no expiry period for points etc. we have recently announced a new plan called the warmer welcomes pro- gram,whichinawayisoneoftheirst.under thisprogram,twoasianbrands,shangri-la andtaj,arefortheirsttimeever,joining hands and will provide members reciprocal andseamlessbeneitsatascaleneverseen before under a hospitality alliance. we focus a lot on brand engagement and brand experi- ences and we work towards ensuring that not onlydowegivebeneitsbutahugeamountof experientialbeneitswhichgetbuiltintothe program itself. the discussion for this alliance started around 8 months back and one of the things we realised was that the two brands, which have a very strong value system, are complimentary to each other. the second thing was that we were talking about markets which were the fastest growing markets in chi- na. there was a lot of similarities in terms of culture and the entire program has been very complimentary.so,ithinktheseweresome of the very important things that we looked at. we looked at markets of dominance and we realised that they are pre-dominantly indian. so,wewentaheadandstartedworkingwith them. the program is a new born baby and we are very excited about it but we do believe that this is really going to add a lot of value to both the brands. khushnooma kapadia, area director marketing - south asia, marriott international marriot has been really lucky when it comes to loyalty programs. now with the combination of three programs under one roof we see 100 millionmembersglobally.so,marriotloyalty programs are very unbeatable as of now and we have seen that customer adoption platforms have grown rapidly. these are exciting times foruspostthemergerwithstarwoodhotels and we have been continuously striving for the harmonisation of the three programs and ensuringthatourphilosophyofcustomerirst is integrated in to the programs. a lot of work has gone since day one and we are sending out a very strong signal to our members and are taking a very additive approach to merg- ing these three programs without having to face any loses. we have launched a website, members.marriot.com, where people can just log in and access their accounts, transfer their points etc. we were a little apprehensive about this transition but our customers have taken it really well and in-fact we started seeing traction on the website within minutes of its launch. there has been a lot of buoyancy and positive acceptance. now the customers can enjoy a huge portfolio of brands and the power of such a past global footprint. 3 programs under one roofprovideexcellentbeneitsandanunparal- leled customer experience. arif patel, vp sales, marketing, distribution & loyalty - india, accorhotels we are the youngest amongst everybody. every program has its own strength and weaknesses but i think experience is needed. i think as an industry we need a major disruption and when it comes to technology, we still have work to do. we are still catching up and that is an op- portunity for everybody. i think apps are a little over rated when it comes to loyalty programs. what is important is to lead the marketplace in experience which is beyond booking hotels. why can’t i as a customer be shown my room via vr technology? if you want the apps to work, there has to be stickiness beyond reason. i am expecting this to happen soon enough and these will be the deciding factors when we talk about taking experience to the next level. it is only platinum customers that are loyal. sowhatisimportanthereistoimprovethe engagement.
22 h i c sa 20 17 skill retention and sticking to project deadlines chief issues facing the industry sunil ghadiok, ceo, nidra hospitality shared his views on his group, its undertakings and challenges facing the hospitality industry. “a s a management company, we understand brand’s culture, speciications,styleand ethos, and we completely immerse our people to understand brands at thesamelevelaswedo.so,theyare able to operate these hotels within all the parameters of the brand, meeting all expectations of the brand itself,” saidsunilghadiok. asserting that as a part of the shantihospitalitygroupmanagement servicescompany,nidrahospitality company had made a mark in terms of its ability to manage multi-branded hotels, he pointed towards an array of hotel companies nidra group had been associated with. “as a management company, we are associated with brands like hyatt, with hyatt regency; with marriott group, wehavefourpointsbysheraton and others. we hope we will make inroads in the accorhotels group for managing grand mercule and novotel sunil ghadiok ceo, nidra hospitality hotels,” he said. noting that, as a management group, they had been growing by leaps and bounds, he explained that the group had its own hotels which were owned assets, beside taking third- party contracts where they brought in brands, and also managed their hotels for them. “we are currently looking at acquiring more hotels to manage. and, also, exercise some amount of equity participation,” he shared. “this is what encompasses nidra hospitality and its entire growth. we are also constantly concentrating on acquisition of good skill, training, and retaining people. ourstrengthliesinprojectmanagementand development,” he added. taking stock of challenges ahead for the industry, he reasoned that skill acquisition and shanti hospitality in mauritius retention was a chief cause of concern. “there are only two challenges today. they are related to, and i would say that is the biggest challenge, acquisition and retention of good skills. and, of course, completing the project within the desired and projected timeframe,” he said. arguing that if companies were able to address these concerns, he said “i think if these two challenges are met by any company, there is no reason of it to not be successful.” accorhotels builds multi-brands across india, 2017 promises to be another milestone accorhotels is adding more teeth to its luxury and upper upscale brands by unveiling its famous fairmont and swissôtel hotels in india. the group will continue to focus on delivering top-notch guest experience, says jean michel casse. through strategic investments, a focused brand strategy and efective business operations, accorhotels has established itself as a leader in the global luxury hotel market with a dedicated portfolio which includes many of the world’s most prestigious luxury, upper upscale and upscale brands. in india, we are excited to add the iconic fairmont and swissôtel brands to our network (located in jaipur and kolkata respectively). these brands add signiicantly to our luxury and upper upscale portfolio, complementing the soitel mumbai bkc and the pullman new delhi aerocity. ,, jean michel casse ceo, india & south asia, accorhotels group completed a momentous decade in india last year and we are excited with our current roadmap of more openings this year and beyond. through strategic investments, a the novotel goa hotel and in 2016, saw the openingofindia’sirstibisstyles,theibis stylesgoacalangute.thisstrategyalsoworks well at new delhi aerocity, delhi’s newest hospitalityprecinct.ourpresencethereis ibis styles goa calangute “w e continue our strong growth momentum in 2017 as we expand our network of hotels in the country across a portfolio ranging from international luxury, upscale to midscale and economy brands and are well positioned to cross the 10,000 rooms threshold. 2016 in particular, was a milestone year for us, adding ten hotels and approximately 2,000 rooms to our portfolio. globally and as a leading operator, accorhotels now has over 4,000 hotels, resorts and residences across 95 countries with india asoneofoursigniicantgrowthmarkets. oursizeablenetworkmeansthatwenow have a rich offering of our internationally acclaimed brands across segments dotting india’s leading tier-one and tier-two locations with the increasing addition of newer cities. we started the year with the opening of the ibis kochi city centre which is our 15th ibis hotelinthecountryandtheirstaccorhotels’ hotel to open in the pristine state of kerala. ourfocuseddevelopmentstrategyfor the midscale and economy segments has ledtothefruitionofasigniicantnumber of novotels with the brand now boasting 14 hotels in india, in locations such as new delhi, mumbai, bangalore, goa, pune, and hyderabad. the novotel brand also focused brand strategy and effective business operations. in india, we are excited to addtheiconicfairmont andswissôtelbrandsto our network (located in jaipur and kolkata respectively). these brandsaddsigniicantly to our luxury and upper upscale portfolio, complementing the soitelmumbaibkcand the pullman new delhi aerocity. interestingly, the 270-room pullman which opened in 2015 was the 100th pullman to open globally, joining 117 pullman hotels in 31 countries. we look forward to accelerated growth opportunities for our luxury, upper upscale and upscale family of hotels over the next few years. a cornerstone of our growth strategy inindiaisthedensiicationofstrategic markets for establishing market leadership. a combined room inventory of 1,000 rooms acrossivehotelsinhyderabadmakesus among the largest operators in the city while in chennai, the planned addition of another four hotels to our existing four will make usthelargestoperatorthere.similarly,goa ishometothenovotelgoaresort&spa, led by the dual pullman and novotel new delhi aerocity developments. combined with the ibis new delhi aerocity, we are by far, the largest operator at aerocity with a total inventory of 1,115 rooms and 3,602 square metres of dedicated meetings space. we continue to drive innovative development formats with the aim of creating superior experiences for our guests, growth for our strategic owners and partners and market leadership for accorhotels. ourleadershipalsoextendstothemice segment in india. accorhotels has the distinction of being the largest operator of convention centres and meeting spaces in india with over 500,000 square feet under management. we currently manage the hyderabad international convention centre, the lavasa international convention centre and the novotel visakhapatnam varun beach, the largest all-sea facing convention centre on the east coast of india. soitel mumbai all of us at accorhotels are focused on delivering compelling guest experiences and an intrinsic part of our guest strategy is focused on loyalty. le club accorhotels is one of the most powerful loyalty programmes in the world with 36 million members globally, almost nine million of whomareintheasiapaciicregion.in addition. accorhotels has access to more than 70 million members of the huazhu hotel group’s loyalty members in china through our strategic alliance with them. there is no greater testament than the loyalty of our guests and we are pleased to say that over 50 percent of our business in india comes from le club accorhotels. knowing and recognising one’s guests is a deep-rooted philosophy at accorhotels. leading with digital hospitality is a strategic imperative for us and accorhotels isinvesting$225millionoveraperiod ofiveyearsforacomprehensivedigital transformation. the cornerstones of our digital strategy are driving operational excellence, boosting hotel revenue, optimizing distribution through more than 100 different channels and most importantly, enhancing guest experience and retention. lastly, none of our growth and development would be possible without our more than 7,500 talented employees in india, who are key to our success. we look forward to welcoming at least another 1,000 team members in 2017 to be a part of the accorhotels family for what promises to be another exciting year ahead!
advertorial h i c sa 20 17 23 the studios – creative meeting and event spaces at andaz delhi theandazstudiosbreak fromtheconinesof traditional conference rooms by providing barrier- free spaces that feature open kitchens and breakaway options. with more than 790 sq m (8,500 sq ft) of studio space, andaz delhi pushes the limits of innovative meetings with locally inspired residential-style spaces that reﬂect the spirit of creative studios. promoting collaborative learning and social interaction, these spaces inspire guests and allow them to create meetings that are speciicallytailoredtotheir needs. ‘dilliwalahs conduct business differently. inspired by their personal style, we created a unique space that seamlessly weaves work with play.’commentsheddosiebs, general manager – andaz delhi. located at a stone’s throw from igi airport, andaz studios offer a space free of barriers, featuring ﬂuid layouts, full audio-visual and business capabilities and open-plan kitchens staffed with friendly chefs and baristas. discover the perfect presentation environment at thestudiosatandazdelhi,a luxury lifestyle hotel by hyatt. nowopen. for more information on studios, please log on delhi.andaz.hyatt.com or call us on + 91 11 4903 1234 follow us on: facebook.com /andazdelhi ● twitter.com /andazdelhi ● instagram.com/andazdelhi call to action:
domore! 21-23 september, 2017 register now on www.bitb.org