Home' Hotel Management : HM FEB 2017 Contents While the forecasted tourism numbers for Australia continue to rise, I believe our
infrastructure and skill base are still a long way from where they need to be to fully
capitalise on the opportunity.
We are seeing some slowing of the Chinese economy, but the visitor growth coming
out of China remains strong, and, by 2018, China is forecast to overtake New Zealand
as Australia’s largest inbound source market. Indonesia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan
and South Korea are also expected to experience solid growth, as are our traditional
markets of New Zealand and the USA. Added to this, Australia’s domestic tourism
markets are booming.
As an industry, I believe we need to push governments to develop infrastructure
that adequately supports our tourism growth. This includes the improvement of roads,
public transport and airports, along with the introduction of high speed rail. Labour and
skill shortages also need to be addressed. We need more multi-lingual staff (especially
Mandarin speakers), because no matter how wonderful the hotel stay, if visitors to our
region experience frustration due to transport issues, road congestion, language barriers
and delays, this will ultimately impact negatively on their overall experience.
While these are known challenges, across the Asia Pacific the biggest unknown
challenges are safety and security. With terror threats on the rise it is vital for hotels to
have procedures in place to ensure all staff are prepared in the case of an emergency or
Another significant challenge the hotel industry faces is reducing our reliance on
OTAs. While we have exceptional partners in OTAs and will continue to work with
them, if we do not achieve improved direct booking capture we risk losing the knowledge
of who our guests really are.
Leveraging the loyalty programs is a key tool for doing this. We will continue to
promote Wyndham Rewards as the umbrella brand for our marketing initiatives to drive
the program, and hence encourage direct bookings and loyalty, which all hotel owners in
our network are benefiting from.
Our loyalty program is rated number one with close to 50 million members
worldwide. Wyndham Rewards is boosting greater loyalty and repeat business for
franchisees and hotel owners with its attainable value proposition, generous points
earning structure, newly added member levels and the recent expansion of its
Today ’s travellers are looking for experiential and immersive travel, so the success
Airbnb has enjoyed and the buzz it has generated is not surprising. I welcome disruptors
within industries as they inspire us all to keep innovating.
Having said this, I maintain that if Airbnb wants to operate in the commercial
short-term accommodation market then it needs to abide by the regulations of the
accommodation sector in which it is operating.
In Australia and New Zealand, these unregulated short-term accommodation
operators do not have consumer safety and community amenity regulations in place, nor
do they have the insurances that apply to regulated operators. They also avoid paying the
fees and taxes that hoteliers are required to pay.
Airbnb is operating far from the bounds of its original ethos – as a means for
travellers to find ‘share’ accommodation. Today, it is a multi-billion dollar short term
commercial property operation, and in most cases no sharing is involved. As such, I don’t
see why it should not have to adhere to the same regulations as hoteliers or timeshare
The rising middle (travelling) class in the Asia Pacific, coupled with improved
transport networks and an aging demographic, is seeing people travelling for longer and
spending more. In response to this growth, Wyndham
Hotel Group continues to expand its South East Asia
and Pacific Rim portfolio by positioning its hotels and
resorts in markets that are being impacted by this growth
including Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, Japan,
Australia and New Zealand.
During 2016 we enjoyed accelerated growth with 28
new signings across South East Asia and the Pacific Rim.
Our strategy is to grow both business arms of
Wyndham Hotel Group and Wyndham Vacation
Ownership. In addition to our robust franchise portfolio,
over the past decade we have been developing a mixed-
use model under the Wyndham and Ramada brands in
the South Pacific. This model, which combines timeshare
and hotel accommodation within the one property, is
enabling us to control our own destiny and the customer
experiences we deliver. It benefits hotel owners, resulting
in shared costs and multiple revenue streams and has
helped us secure some strategic locations.
Over the course of this year, our plan is to significantly
expand Wyndham Hotel Group’s diverse collection of
brands throughout South East Asia and the Pacific Rim.
We have more than 70 hotels and close to 20,000 rooms
in the pipeline. Of these, 80 per cent are new builds.
We set up our Singapore office last year to be able
to better service South East Asian markets. In terms of
management deals, we are looking at securing contracts
in key Asian gateway cities. We currently manage
properties in Singapore, Melaka, Jakarta, Phuket, Bali,
New Zealand and Fiji, along with many in Australia,
and are also looking for mixed use opportunities in key
Number of hotels & rooms (Globally): Close to 8000
hotels / 672,000 rooms
Number of hotels & rooms (South East Asia and
Pacific Rim): 100-plus hotels / over 16,400 rooms
Number of hotels & rooms (Australia/NZ/Fiji/
Noumea) 43 hotels / close to 4,000 rooms
Number of employees: More than 38,000 (Wyndham
Worldwide) / Approximately 9,000 (Wyndham Hotel
Group) /Approximately 2,000 (Australia/ NZ/ Fiji/
Loyalty program members: Close to 50 million
Wyndham Rewards members
Head office locations: Parsippany, New Jersey, USA
(global) Gold Coast, Queensland (Australia)
President and Managing Director
Wyndham Hotel Group South East Asia and Pacific Rim &
Wyndham Vacation Resorts Asia Pacific
66 HM The Business of Accommodation
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