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HSMAI Asia Pacific - Cornell Nanyang Institute of Hospitality Management

Report on emerging trends and insights from the 2nd annual thought leaders in Marketing roundtable

In June 2008, senior hospitality executives convened to discuss changes in the travel and hospitality landscape at the Second Annual Thought Leaders in Marketing Roundtable in Singapore and the outcomes and insights from the discussion are now available in a report released by HSMAI Asia Pacific and the Cornell-Nanyang Institute of Hospitality Management.

“The travel and hospitality landscape is changing drastically as a result of major power shifts in global economies, the emergence of highly dynamic technologies and the growing expectations of consumers and stakeholders,” said Dr. Judy Siguaw, Dean Cornell-Nanyang Institute of Hospitality Management. “This roundtable provided an open forum for discussion among industry leaders.”

The agenda topics covered during the roundtable discussion included trends and transformations in travel distribution systems and self-service technology, valuing the SME corporate travel market in Asia Pacific and marketing metrics for business meetings, events and corporate group travel segments. HSMAI Asia Pacific, the Cornell-Nanyang Institute of Hospitality Management and the Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau sponsored the event.

Some insights stemming from the session were:

    * While travel wholesalers and intermediaries in Asia Pacific maintain a large share of the market, the next generation dynamic packaging technology will challenge the traditional wholesale business model and make them redundant.
    * Tech-savvy consumers like Gen X and Y will drive the adoption of online ‘self-service’ tools and technologies and outpace the usage of such tools by existing Asian consumer groups.
    * A growing demand in the small meetings and leisure group travel segments signal a need for new aggregation software and meta-search engines to help planners to speed up the process to search, select and transaction basic travel components (guest rooms and meeting space) online.
    * In spite of the current economic climate, roundtable participants see a continuation of demand in business travel by small to medium enterprises (SMEs). With SMEs being considered as the engine of development for many economies and accounting for as much as 90 percent of enterprises in the Asia Pacific region, the group raised the need for more research to understand the specific travel management requirements and customer needs of this market segment in various parts of Asia.

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