SAN FRANCISCO – Kevin May – https://www.tnooz.com/article/hotelsoft-startup-pitch/
Hotelsoft claims to be a next generation, cloud-based software and services company, providing revenue management tools for hotels.
The company is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has a development office in Bengaluru in India.
Hotel veteran and co-founder Vish Bhatia came up with the idea “on the back of a napkin” at a bar in San Francisco International Airport, apparently frustrated at the lack of “intuitive solutions” in the hotel sector.
He joined forces with Abhishek Begerhotta, who was having similar experiences in the healthcare industry.
HotelSoft recently raised $3 million from a combination of founder and unnamed angel investment.
A Q&A with co-founder Vish Bhatia:
What problem does your business solve?
The genesis of Hotelsoft came from my experiences as a VP of revenue management at a hotel chain and the frustrations of my team, as we always seemed to lack the information needed to make effective pricing decisions in real time.
So I asked the question, what if there was a platform that could give me all the information I needed such as what are the booking windows by market segments and the key accounts, what are their lengths of stays, which accounts are under-performing, what is the pace by segment, what is the market demand outlook, what are the airfare trends, what are the pricing trends of my compset and the local shared economy, what’s my financial forecast and more?
So we spent our first year as a consulting firm, while looking for a solution which answered all these questions and yet was affordable.
There was none. We figured if I have these issues there may be thousands of other hotels facing similar challenges, and thus Hotelsoft was born.
We are trying to solve three basic problems facing the industry today:
- Data isn’t readily available
- Forecasting is a big issue with most systems today – they don’t understand hotel demand or anticipate market influencers accurately enough leading to incorrect forecasts and thus pricing
- Lack of uniform data has created information silos which is hurting profitability of the hospitality industry.
While the recent debate has been around the fact that it may not be important to consider demand based pricing and the sales pitch is now moving to just external signals, we believe that it is dangerous to adopt such a narrow view.
Hotels can’t ignore organic demand while looking at weather patterns and air lifts. We believe in a hybrid approach, which begins with understanding true organic demand for the property, layering in market demand signals and taking a holistic approach to pricing.
We call this Intelligent Pricing.
Hotelsoft One is our flagship integrated Revenue Management, Business Intelligence and Rate Shop platform that uses Intelligent Pricing big data and machine learning algorithms, which incorporates organic demand with external influencers such as compset pricing, airfare, city events, Tripadvisor ratings and other third party data to make smarter pricing decisions.
Rate Shop data includes rates from all major OTAs, hotel websites, vacation rental sites such as AirBnB, Homeaway, VRBO, wholesalers and other travel partners.
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