WTM 2012: Treovi integrates with channel managers for post-Google hotel booking age

New commission free hotel room distribution platform Treovi has started to integrate with channel management firms as it looks to sign up more properties to its system.

The online reservation system has 2,000 properties already signed up, but through working with the main global channel management firms like Siteminder and Rategain expects to hit up to 7,000 by next March.

Co-founder Michal Wrobel believes the model is ideally suited to the new generation of digital native online travellers who will not be using Google to search for hotels.

Treovi, which unlike Global Hotel Exchange does not intend to charge the customer, plans to monetise its offering through optional marketing services like offering hotels premium listings.

It has promised never to bring in fees, intending to more fully exploit the potential of social media and channels like mobile than traditional online travel agents are doing.

“The feedback from hotels is that there is a big confidence issue when it comes to OTAs right now. With bookings that come from OTAs the money charged to the customer is not fully the hotel’s.

“There is this level of inventory being affected by something they cannot control.”

Wrobel believes a commission free model gives hoteliers the freedom to manage their inventory for their own benefit rather than being in the hands of powerful distributors which have their own agenda.

“The future is that digital natives will not consider booking hotels as we do now. We are trying to prove the OTAs are wrong about giving so much money to Google Adwords.

“In the future consumers are going to consider alternative ways of getting to a hotel’s website and making a booking.

“Natives use devices that consume data, it’s no longer more about having a browser, an ATP protocol and a website and going on to Google.

“The new generation of digital natives start with the app environment and this is only the beginning. We are going to optimise more marketing and advertising in that direction.

“We are also going to work on new products to optimise occupancy rates that are in tune with what hoteliers want. No one does this now.”

Treovi said it is developing mobile capability that will put it ahead of traditional OTAs because their backend systems are not set up to integrate with bookings that come through the channel.

“Mobile bookings and data bookings that are not related to a browser or Google are going to grow very strongly.

“There is a huge shift that is happening right now. The traveller is looking for more interaction, discovering more not necessarily related to having a guide to read.

“We have this situation where the digital natives are not going to go on to Google to type in ‘hotels in Atlanta’ to book.

“Of course there will be research, comparison of prices and reviews but the way users consume the content is going to change.

“Consumer behaviour has changed on the one side and on the other hotels are completely fed up with commissions.

“They are realising they are losing more and more power and control of their inventory to the OTAs. This is their business, the rooms are theirs and OTAs are taking this away in a more and more aggressive manner.

“There is a new generation of hotel manager now who have graduated in the last five or six years and they have Facebook accounts, they are fine with apps.

“They understand the message from hotel marketing companies that they must diversify their distribution and they are asking themselves what the hell are OTAs doing.”

Treovi has developed a hotel management suite to enable yield and inventory management by the hotelier.

It claims that while the cost of running a booking engine each year decreases the hotels never see the benefit of this because they are in the hands of the OTAs.

The firm claims $30 billion of commissions are collected each year by OTAs which are not invested properly into using web technologies leaving hotels to pay exorbitant costs for their web presence.

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