Kudos Travel Technology and Amadeus partner to boost business travel offering

PhocusWire | August 28, 2019

The Australia-based company and Amadeus say they’re combining their technology and will bring new developments to market. As part of the partnership, Kudos has released a passport scanning feature within its platform which enables passports to be “uploaded, validated and synchronized” to booking tools as well as the GDS and other third party systems. Brisbane-based Kudos has also started piloting its own a natural language application ‘Zeus’, which enables access to profiles, real-time alerts and where travelers are via machine learning.

Spotlight

With this additional negotiation strength, we can access special corporate rates at a vast range of hotel options in all four corners of the globe. Furthermore, we’re able to include complimentary value-added extras, such as free breakfast, Wi-Fi and room upgrades, as part of our global smart-stay corporate benefits programme, not only improving comfort and productivity for your travelers but also passing further savings to your business.

Spotlight

With this additional negotiation strength, we can access special corporate rates at a vast range of hotel options in all four corners of the globe. Furthermore, we’re able to include complimentary value-added extras, such as free breakfast, Wi-Fi and room upgrades, as part of our global smart-stay corporate benefits programme, not only improving comfort and productivity for your travelers but also passing further savings to your business.

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INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

New Research by Roomex and GBTA Reveals Top Travel Management Challenges in 2022

Roomex | July 19, 2022

New research conducted by the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), in partnership with Roomex, the workforce travel platform, has unveiled the state of business and project travel in 2022. Findings from the survey, completed by over 100 Travel Managers in the US and Canada between March 29 and April 15, 2022, has revealed the growth of business travel post-COVID and the methods top businesses are using to manage their staff travel. Demonstrating the resurgence of workforce travel post-COVID, the survey found that a third of businesses have some significant overnight accommodation needs, with between 25% – 100% of the workforce staying overnight at least once a week. Sixty six percent said between 1% – 24% of their workforce stay elsewhere overnight at least once a week, with only 1% saying they have no accommodation needs at this time. A third of businesses surveyed stated that their average room nights booked per month exceeded 500, with 13% booking between 200 – 500 and 18% booking 100 – 200 room nights per month. Project-based travel is particularly prominent, with 39% of businesses saying their organization engages in "a lot" of project travel. Rising costs featured prominently in the survey, with accommodation price featuring in 82% of travel managers' responses when asked: "What is most important when managing corporate travel?" Seventy nine percent of respondents called out visibility and reporting as an important feature, while 57% noted the importance of duty of care/safety. Just 32% highlighted the price of airline tickets. Compliance enforcement topped the poll in booking challenges, with 60% of travel managers admitting that getting their staff to stick to travel policy is a challenge their organization currently faces. Fifty one percent noted that traveler satisfaction is also a challenge, pointing to the importance of maintaining strong employee relations in the new post-COVID workplace. Keeping track of all company travelers (38%), keeping track of travel spend/budget (30%) and unsuitable accommodation types (17%) also ranked among the challenges travel managers face in 2022. "It is clear from the research that while workforce travel has returned for most businesses, the challenges facing travel managers and finance teams have changed. Rising costs and a renewed focus on traveler satisfaction mean that travel managers need a flexible, efficient and innovative solution to keep up with their organization's travel requirements. Roomex solves this problem and enables every travel manager to take that extra coffee break, safe in the knowledge that they've got the best rate and their travelers will be happy." -Garry Moroney, CEO of Roomex Christopher Ely, Research Director at GBTA, said: "In our ongoing GBTA research, we've seen a continued evolution in the challenges that travel managers are now facing. This data around project-based travel and high room night volumes provides insights on what travel managers are thinking about now for their employees and companies, and how they are navigating new considerations as a result of the pandemic and other factors." Listen to Darin Peterson, Sales Manager at Roomex, and Christopher Ely, GBTA Research Director, further discuss the research findings on GBTA's "The Business of Travel" podcast. About Roomex Roomex is the all-in-one travel and expenses platform built for businesses with a mobile workforce. Roomex helps you book, manage, pay and analyze all of your accommodation, rail and expenses in one place - saving both time and money. Founded in Dublin, Ireland with offices in Boston, London, and Munich, Roomex is on a mission to make workforce travel and spend management as seamless and cost-effective as possible. With two nominations for Accommodation Innovation and Payments Innovation at the Business Travel Awards Europe 2022, Roomex is pioneering seamless travel booking. To learn more, visit www.roomex.com. About GBTA The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is the world's premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA's members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually. GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy, and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts. To learn how business travel drives lasting business growth, visit www.gbta.org.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Capital Square and Method Co. Announce Groundbreaking of New ROOST Apartment Hotel in Charleston

Capital Square | July 22, 2022

Capital Square, one of the nation's leading sponsors of tax-advantaged real estate investments and an active developer of multifamily communities, and Method Co., a real estate management, development and design company rooted in hospitality, today held a groundbreaking ceremony for a new design-forward, 50-unit development bridging the boutique hotel experience with apartment-style living, located at 529 King Street in Charleston's historic downtown. The $61 million project designed by acclaimed Morris Adjmi Architects will feature 52,700 square feet of space comprising a mix of studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom apartment hotel units, a rooftop lounge, and 27,700 square feet of rentable space. Method Co. will operate the property's rooftop lounge, drawing on significant experience in food and beverage operations to create a space that serves both as an amenity to guests and locals. Attendees included Capital Square executives Louis Rogers, founder and CEO, and Whitson Huffman, chief strategy and investment officer; Method Co.'s CEO and co-founder, Randall Cook, and president and co-founder, David Grasso; and Kathy Crawford, regional director of the Office of U.S. Senator Tim Scott (S.C.). With construction now underway, the hotel property is slated for completion in early 2024. "Capital Square is an active developer of luxury properties in growing markets within the Southeast and we couldn't be more pleased to begin construction on our inaugural project in Charleston, Charleston is a premier market, home to a growing community of high-income families and one of the nation's most popular tourist destinations. 529 King Street will contribute to this legacy and become a premier destination for local residents and tourists alike." -Whitson Huffman, chief strategy and investment officer The property will be the city's first high-design, extended-stay hotel concept blending the comfort and practicality of an apartment with the amenities and design of a boutique hotel, creating a temporary living environment ideally suited for a long-term stay. "We are thrilled to break ground on our first ROOST Apartment Hotel in South Carolina and our second project in the city of Charleston, ROOST will offer guests in Charleston a comfortable stay in a beautifully designed apartment that feels like a home and the flexibility to stay a few nights or a few months. The building's design by Morris Adjmi Architects is outstanding; it will be a fitting complement to the classic architectural charm of Charleston." -David Grasso, President and Co-Founder of Method Co. Located in the highly sought-after "Upper King" section of downtown Charleston, which is home to a concentration of luxury retail stores, restaurants and nightlife, the new apartment hotel will serve as an ideal accommodation for the city's high volume of annual visitors. The Upper King Street neighborhood also supports a burgeoning tech and start-up scene and represents a growth corridor and exceptional demand generator for higher-end residential and hotel development. About ROOST Apartment Hotel ROOST Apartment Hotel is a high-design boutique extended-stay hotel concept, conceptualized by Philadelphia-based hospitality company Method Co. A first of its kind, ROOST introduces a fresh approach to hospitality by blending the comfort and practicality of an apartment with the amenities and design of a boutique hotel, creating a temporary living environment ideally suited for a long-term stay. Designed by Morris Adjmi Architects, ROOST offers studio, one and two-bedroom and penthouse apartments with full-sized kitchens and modern appliances in a beautifully appointed space, which features contemporary furnishings, antique elements, custom lighting, and unique artwork. Featured amenities include an artisanal coffee program curated by La Colombe, bike share program, and recurring resident receptions that partner with local vendors, while a dedicated 24-hour concierge desk and on-site services team further enhance and ensure a memorable guest experience. The first location, ROOST Midtown, opened in 2015 and features 28 fully furnished apartments; their second outpost, ROOST Rittenhouse, followed in 2016 featuring 27 apartments and a communal lobby; their third location, ROOST East Market opened in January 2019 with 60 apartments, an outdoor pool, and communal in Philadelphia's Midtown Village neighborhood. The fourth location is the first outside of Philadelphia – ROOST Cleveland, which opened in March 2022 and features 62 apartments located downtown within the historic May building, a restoration of the city's original 1915 department store, while their fifth location, ROOST Tampa, opened in July 2022 and includes 97 apartments within Asher, a residential building within the new Water Street development. ROOST has plans to open locations in other markets, including Detroit, Baltimore and Charleston. www.myroost.com About Capital Square Capital Square is a national real estate firm specializing in tax-advantaged real estate investments, including Delaware statutory trusts for Section 1031 exchanges, qualified opportunity zone funds for tax deferral and exclusion and a real estate investment trust (REIT). In recent years the company has become an active developer of mixed-use multifamily properties in the southeastern US, with eight current projects totaling approximately 2,000 apartment units with a total development cost in excess of $600 million. Since 2012, Capital Square has completed more than $6.0 billion in transaction volume. Capital Square's related entities provide a range of services, including due diligence, acquisition, loan sourcing, property/asset management, and disposition, for a growing number of high-net-worth investors, private equity firms, family offices and institutional investors. Since 2017, Capital Square has been recognized by Inc. 5000 as one of the fastest growing companies in the nation for four consecutive years. In 2017, 2018 and 2020, the company was also ranked on Richmond BizSense's list of fastest growing companies. Additionally, Capital Square was listed by Virginia Business on their "Best Places to Work in Virginia" report in 2019 and their "Fantastic 50" reports in 2019 and 2020. To learn more, visit www.CapitalSq.com. About Method Co. Method Co. is a Philadelphia-based hospitality, development, design and branding firm founded on the joining of historically compatible disciplines under one roof; the firm bridges the worlds of interior design and real estate development, while embracing the custom design of products, furniture, identities and experiences. Built from a team of individuals with extensive experience in the fields of finance, interior design, branding, architecture, urban planning and fine arts, Method company's diverse skill set forms the foundation of the firm's interdisciplinary practice. The team has been responsible for the design, staging and development of hotel, restaurant, and real estate projects, such as the ROOST Apartment Hotel brand, Whyle, Wm. Mulherin's Sons Restaurant & Hotel and HIROKI restaurant, along with the newly opened boutique property in Charleston, The Pinch, with plans to expand their concepts to other major markets within the US including Detroit and Wilmington, DE. www.methodco.com

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

IMG Partners with bolt to Offer Device Protection to Travelers

IMG & bolt | July 29, 2022

International Medical Group® (IMG®), an award-winning global insurance benefits and assistance services company, has announced a new partnership with bolt, an international insurtech and leading provider of mobile device protection programs. IMG now offers Mobile Device Protection as an optional add-on when purchasing a plan within the Patriot Travel series, IMG's market-leading travel medical insurance offerings. The add-on provides coverage for repair or replacement of a traveler's mobile device if it is lost, stolen, or accidentally damaged during their trip. "We know how indispensable devices like cell phones and tablets have become in nearly every phase of travel: housing boarding passes and tickets, communicating with friends and family, and documenting your travels while abroad,By partnering with bolt to offer Mobile Device Protection, we are taking another step toward our goal of providing products and services that meet nearly every traveler and expatriate need while away from home." -Amanda Winkle, IMG Chief Commercial Officer. If a traveler's mobile device is damaged while traveling, such as a broken screen or internal overheating, they can quickly and easily get reconnected to their digital life through an integrated claims process. bolt will help get the device repaired, provide a cash settlement for the replacement cost of the device, or replace the phone. "This partnership acknowledges the importance of protecting wireless devices when customers need it the most, especially when they may be far away from home and rely on their smartphones to serve as a lifeline," said Clayton Bodnarek, EVP of Alternative Distribution at bolt. "Our work with IMG brings comfort to customers who are traveling, knowing that if there is an emergency and they need the connection a device brings, we'll be there for them." IMG plans to offer the optional Mobile Device Protection add-on with more of its insurance products in the future. For more information on the industry-leading travel and health safety solutions IMG offers, please visit www.imglobal.com. About International Medical Group® (IMG®) International Medical Group® (IMG®), a SiriusPoint company, is an award-winning global insurance benefits and assistance services company that has served millions of members worldwide since its founding in 1990. The preeminent provider of travel and health safety solutions, IMG offers a wide range of insurance programs, including international private medical insurance, travel medical insurance, and travel insurance, as well as enterprise services, including insurance administrative services and 24/7 emergency medical, security, and travel assistance. IMG's world-class services, combined with an extensive product portfolio, provide Global Peace of Mind® for travelers, students, missionaries, marine crews, and other individuals or groups traveling, working, or living away from home. For more information, please visit www.imglobal.com. About bolt bolt is the leading insurance exchange for the P&C insurance industry, uniting distributors and providers on a single platform to transform the way insurance is bought and sold. The result is the world's largest exchange working with two-thirds of America's leading carriers, helping more people protect the things they value.

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