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Outlook mixed for 2009 volume corporate business in Hong Kong

HSMAI’s HK/Macau Chapter released the result of a short survey polling hotelier opinion on the outlook of their expectations for the upcoming corporate RFP season. Dr. David L. Jones Ph.D. Associate Professor, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, presented the results during a recent breakfast webinar and discussion…

HSMAI’s HK/Macau Chapter released the result of a short survey polling hotelier opinion on the outlook of their expectations for the upcoming corporate RFP season. Dr. David L. Jones Ph.D. Associate Professor, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, presented the results during a recent breakfast webinar and discussion, held on 3 June 2008 at the HK Polytechnic University.

Albeit based on a small sample size, the survey results were indicative of the general view of the corporate market including those present at the webinar. “Business from long haul markets is expected to slow in the next year, however hoteliers expect to maintain or see a slight increase in their revenue from intra-Asia Pacific markets. The survey results made apparent that hoteliers are betting on growth from China to off-set any decline from other markets. In view of this, hotels are advised to re-evaluate the value of their key accounts and to anticipate a change to the market mix,” observed Carmen Lam, a founding board member of HSMAI Asia Pacific and the Chapter Lead for the HSMAI Hong Kong/Macau chapter.

At the breakfast, Professor David Jones facilitated a discussion on how to manage corporate RFPs in times of economic turbulence from major source markets. Hoteliers present, discussed ways to manage the trend including proactive management of their geographical mix, closer examination of channel costs in relation to corporate pricing, sharper focus on MICE, more innovative ways to boost ancillary revenue, and dynamic pricing for small and medium enterprises, amongst others.

Key findings from the survey:

  • 90% of respondents report corporate accounts are already tightening control of travel expenses
  • 45% of respondents expect the value of negotiated contracts in 2009 to be the same as 2008
  • Only 33% of respondents expect to secure more volume corporate roomnights in 2009 than 2008
  • 100% of respondents expect business from North America will decrease while 80% expects business from China to increase

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