Avoya Travel Pivots to Online Platform for 2020 Avoya Conference

Avoya Travel | August 25, 2020

Avoya Travel®, one of the travel industry’s most innovative brands, has announced they are changing the “venue” for their annual Avoya Conference to an online platform following the recent success of their first-ever Avoya Mastermind Virtual Land Forum. Originally scheduled to take place onboard the Celebrity Equinox October 20-26, 2020, the 2020 Avoya Conference will now feature two separate events spanning eight total days, October 19-22, 2020 and December 1-4, 2020. The two-part Conference was adapted to an online platform to protect the health and safety of the Independent Agencies in the Avoya Network, Avoya Travel’s staff, and Avoya’s preferred supplier partners considering the current environment.

Spotlight

Key industry spokespeople joined us for an informative Q&A on the Hospitality Industry.

Ted Horner (Managing Director at Hospitality Technology Consultants), Tish Nyar (Director of Operations at Australia & New Zealand TFE Hotels), and Scott Boyes (Vice President Operations at NSW/ACT Accor Hotels) provided their insight on the interaction between technology and hospitality.

Spotlight

Key industry spokespeople joined us for an informative Q&A on the Hospitality Industry.

Ted Horner (Managing Director at Hospitality Technology Consultants), Tish Nyar (Director of Operations at Australia & New Zealand TFE Hotels), and Scott Boyes (Vice President Operations at NSW/ACT Accor Hotels) provided their insight on the interaction between technology and hospitality.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY,COMMERCIAL TRAVEL

Sabre, Conferma Pay and Mastercard Join Forces to Power the Travel Economy with Virtual Cards

Sabre Corporation,Conferma Pay and Mastercard | November 29, 2022

Sabre Corporation (NASDAQ: SABR) a leading software and technology provider that powers the global travel industry, and Conferma Pay, a global fintech firm that specializes in payment technology, announced a new partnership with Mastercard to accelerate the use of virtual cards for business-to-business (B2B) travel payments. Today's announcement builds on Sabre's August 2022 acquisition of Conferma Pay. The collaboration with Mastercard is the next step in advancing Sabre's goal to create an open and independent travel payment ecosystem. Digitization of travel payments with virtual cards helps address the historic challenges associated with B2B leisure and corporate travel payments. The securely generated, single use card numbers provide a link between booking and associated payments to third party suppliers. Travel buyers and suppliers are therefore able to easily track and reconcile payments, as well as benefit from flexible pricing, financing options, and enhanced security through card payment guarantees. "The payments industry is in the midst of a revolution and there is an increased need for travel companies to better manage the whole payment experience, Companies in the travel space – including travel management companies, travel agencies, corporations, issuers and technology partners – need sophisticated solutions and seamless connections. Sabre is taking strategic steps to fulfill the needs of our industry, beginning with the acquisition of Conferma Pay. Now, the new partnership with Mastercard will help Conferma Pay to build new and enhanced digital capabilities in virtual cards, transforming the payment experience for issuers." -Roshan Mendis, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer, Sabre Travel Solutions. As part of the agreement, Mastercard has agreed to make a minority investment in Conferma Pay, which will continue to operate independently and serve the entire travel industry and beyond. Mastercard's investment in Conferma Pay is subject to customary closing conditions. A combination of experience, technologies and capabilities will accelerate travel payment innovation and drive inclusive and sustainable growth for the sector, said Chris Fendley, Executive Vice President, Enterprise Partnerships at Mastercard. Virtual cards deliver visibility, boost liquidity and increase control over B2B payment flows, which enhance payment strategies and empower organizations across the travel value chain to run, grow and protect their business, which has never been more essential. Conferma Pay connects issuers to more than 700 travel management companies, all the major global distribution systems and more than 100 online booking tools. Conferma Pay is fully integrated with all the major card schemes and serves more than 50 banking partners, who issue Conferma Pay generated virtual cards in nearly 100 currencies. "We've already made significant inroads in the B2B travel space through partnering with Sabre, We are excited about the new investments. This, combined with our existing strong relationships, will enable Conferma Pay to build on our global footprint and be at the forefront of addressing industry challenges and opportunities." -Martin Cowley, interim CEO at Conferma Pay Sabre's Virtual Payments will continue to offer Conferma Pay services – with increased capabilities that help travel buyers, agencies and corporations best support travel customer needs. Sabre Virtual Payments is a unique, secure, automated and integrated end-to-end payment solution designed to simplify and add value to the transactions that TMCs, OTAs, travel agencies, corporations and travel suppliers do every day. Sabre Virtual Payments takes all the capabilities of Conferma Pay and its network of issuers and combines it with seamless integration across Sabre products for -connected travel buyers, agencies and corporations. About Sabre Corporation Sabre Corporation is a leading software and technology company that powers the global travel industry, serving a wide range of travel companies including airlines, hoteliers, travel agencies and other suppliers. The company provides retailing, distribution and fulfilment solutions that help its customers operate more efficiently, drive revenue and offer personalized traveler experiences. Through its leading travel marketplace, Sabre connects travel suppliers with buyers from around the globe. Sabre's technology platform manages more than $260B worth of global travel spend annually. Headquartered in Southlake, Texas, USA, Sabre serves customers in more than 160 countries around the world. For more information visit www.sabre.com. About Mastercard (NYSE: MA) Mastercard is a global technology company in the payments industry. Our mission is to connect and power an inclusive, digital economy that benefits everyone, everywhere by making transactions safe, simple, smart and accessible. Using secure data and networks, partnerships and passion, our innovations and solutions help individuals, financial institutions, governments and businesses realize their greatest potential. Our decency quotient, or DQ, drives our culture and everything we do inside and outside of our company. With connections across more than 210 countries and territories, we are building a sustainable world that unlocks priceless possibilities for all. www.mastercard.com About Conferma Pay Conferma Pay is a global financial technology company. It designs and integrate virtual payment systems that provide a more efficient, seamless and secure way to pay for businesses. Conferma Pay was born in Manchester in 2005. Since then, it has connected over 700 TMCs, and directly integrates with all the major GDSs and OBTs. Its roots lie in corporate travel payment integration. It enables its payment providers to flow virtual cards into the preferred purchasing process of any business travel buyer. Crucial to this is its network of banking partners, who have issued virtual cards in over 200 countries, in 40 currencies with over 45 commercial banking partners via all major card networks. Its ecosystem continues to expand to meet the growing requirements of its global customer base.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Highgate announces agreement to acquire viceroy hotels & resorts

Highgate | December 19, 2022

An affiliate of the Principals of Highgate announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Viceroy Hotels & Resorts (Viceroy). The LA-based, award-winning hospitality group is known for its highly individual modern luxury hotels and resorts throughout the world, and was voted one of the top 10 hotel brands globally in the 2022 Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards. The Viceroy brand debuted in 2000 with the launch of Viceroy Santa Monica and has evolved into a portfolio of hotels and resorts in iconic destinations such as St Lucia, Chicago, Los Cabos and Snowmass. "We are excited for Viceroy's future and we believe that this acquisition will not only fuel the future expansion of our brand, but also give us a true partner, one who will offer incredible support, opportunity and collaboration. This deal will accelerate our momentum, and solidify our position as the leading modern luxury lifestyle brand in our space," stated Bill Walshe, CEO of Viceroy. "We are thrilled to execute this transaction with Viceroy. Viceroy has built an outstanding customer reputation due in part to its strong service culture and incredible team,Through complementing Viceroy's platform and DNA with Highgate's diversified ability to grow through real estate acquisitions, development, and third-party growth channels, Highgate intends to add brand-accretive hotels to the Viceroy portfolio that will further enhance customer perception and brand awareness. Further, through powering Viceroy with a proprietary relationship with Highgate's operating company, and imparting the benefits of Highgate's scale, we will be able to provide significant incremental value to associates, guests, owners and partners." -Richard Russo, Principal at Highgate. We look forward to working with the Viceroy team to add visible and impactful hotels to the platform, and cement Viceroy as one of the most noteworthy luxury lifestyle hotel brands in the industry,continued Russo. In the coming months, we will be announcing exciting additions to the portfolio in major urban gateway markets and select resort destinations that will invoke the distinct quality and luxury service that Viceroy has long been known for. The transaction is expected to close in early 2023. For more information on Highgate, visit Highgate.com. ABOUT HIGHGATE: Highgate is a leading real estate investment and hospitality management company with over $20 billion of assets under management. Highgate has a 30-year track record as an investment manager, operating partner, and developer for REITs, private equity firms, sovereign wealth funds, high net worth individuals, and other institutional investors. With a particular focus in hospitality real estate, Highgate's portfolio includes over 500 owned and/or managed hotels comprising over 84,000 rooms across the United States, Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Highgate's capabilities extend to adjacent real estate verticals including multifamily, short-term rentals, and diversified healthcare real estate, as well as investments in real estate-linked securities, technology platforms, and hospitality-related operating businesses. Highgate maintains corporate offices in New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, London, Miami, Seattle, and Waikiki. For more information, visit: www.highgate.com ABOUT VICEROY HOTELS & RESORTS: Viceroy Hotels & Resorts is a global modern luxury brand, inspiring travelers with one-of-a-kind, authentic experiences that bring together provocative design and intuitive service. Dynamic destinations immersed in the local community and culture are at the core of the Viceroy guest experience, and to better serve travelers the brand has established three unique hotel categories consisting of the Icon Collection composed of unparalleled properties furnishing lavish experiences, the Lifestyle Series offering energizing stays in vibrant locales, and Urban Retreats based in bold, eccentric cities. Viceroy's portfolio of hotels and resorts can be found in a diverse array of breathtaking and inspiring destinations, including Los Cabos, Santa Monica, Chicago, Beverly Hills, Riviera Maya, Snowmass, San Francisco, Washington D.C. and St. Lucia. In 2020, the brand expanded to D.C. with the opening of the Viceroy Washington DC and Hotel Zena (Washington D.C.), and Viceroy is growing its international portfolio with the recent opening of Viceroy Kopaonik Serbia and looking ahead with Viceroy at Ombria Resort Algarve (Portugal) in 2023 and Viceroy Bocas Del Toro Panama in 2024. Additionally, Viceroy was named in the top ten of 'Top 25 Hotel Brands' on Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards 2022. Viceroy for Everyone, Viceroy's ongoing commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion to its colleagues and guests can be found at www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/about-us/diversity-equity-inclusion.Viceroy is a member of the Global Hotel Alliance (GHA) DISCOVERY, a unique loyalty program offering exclusive benefits and experiences to its members at over 800 hotels around the world. For more information, visit www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com. Follow Viceroy on Facebook and Instagram.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Highgate Announces New Developments in Europe

Highgate | January 23, 2023

Highgate, a company involved in hotel management, investment, technology, and development, has announced the launch of HG Portugal, as well as the relaunch of the Dorsett City London Hotel. HG Portugal opens with a portfolio of 18 hotels in several Portuguese markets, including Lisbon, Algarve, and Porto. The portfolio includes hotels under the Hilton and IHG brand families and many notable independent hotels, such as Salgados Palace, Cascade Resort, and Sao Rafael Atlantico. In addition, the portfolio spans urban full-service hotels, waterfront luxury resorts, lifestyle boutique hotels, and large convention facilities, all drawing from core competencies across Highgate's global footprint. Highgate has selected Alexandre Solleiro as Chief Executive Officer of HG Portugal as part of its efforts to build a best-in-class operating capability in Portugal. Alexandre Solleiro brings more than 30 years of hospitality leadership expertise in Portugal, and he is supported by a dedicated leadership team from all disciplines. The team will leverage Highgate's existing resources and platforms in Europe, the Caribbean, the United States, and Latin America while also bringing specialized Portugal-based experience. Highgate brings global experience as an owner/operator in leisure destination markets and lifestyle, branded, and city-center hotels to the Portugal market. It adds unique value to its managed hotels via a platform designed to optimize distribution, operational efficiencies, and hotel concept development. The launch of HG Portugal follows the October 2021 announcement of two portfolio additions in the UK market: Grosvenor House Suites in London's Mayfair District and the Dorsett City London Hotel. As part of a more extensive repositioning, Highgate will also begin running the Dorsett City London Hotel using a relaunched concept on March 1, 2023. Arash Azarbarzin, Chief Executive Officer of Highgate, stated, "The launch of HG Portugal complements Highgate's recent re-entry into the UK management space, furthering the application of our proven business towards strategic global opportunities." He added, "Honed over the last 30 years, we will apply our innovative approach to operations, distribution, food and beverage, branding, and positioning during a remarkable moment for Portugal, as more travelers are discovering its magnificence as a prime destination." (Source – PR Newswire) About Highgate New York-based Highgate is a leading hospitality management and investment company. It is a prominent figure in the US gateway markets, which include Boston, Honolulu, Miami, San Francisco, and New York. It is also expanding its presence in Europe using properties in Barcelona and London. Highgate offers professional guidance at every stage of the hospitality property cycle, from development and planning to disposition or recapitalization. Highgate is a trusted partner for major hotel brands and top ownership groups, with an executive team comprised of some of the industry's most experienced hotel management leaders.

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