In this session, five industry leaders talked about the future development of hotel industry under the New Normal. The leaders shared their opinions with the audiences through interactions on Wechat, which is really zero-distance communication.
This session mainly addressed the following issues:
Firstly, how is the future development of hotel industry under the New Normal?
The New Normal refers to the current new status of China, especially the new trends of development. Over the past decade, there has been an oversupply of hotels in China. Mr. Sun from IHG stated that the key to the New Normal is structural adjustment: Firstly, the changes in the investment structure of hotels; Secondly, the emergence of hotels with special features; Thirdly, the prosperous development of mid-tier hotels. Mr. Zhang from BTG pointed out that the research on the New Normal should emphasize on the demand structure first, and then further research on the hotel products. Mr. Cheng from Wanda emphasized that under the New Normal, the developers, hotel management companies and hotel managers must adjust their positionings as well as their strategies and behaviors to survive. Mr. Yen from Hyatt mentioned that under the New Normal, there are two big changes: Firstly, the change of demand (the rise of middle class) and secondly, the change of hotel investment structure (from developing the hotel as a supporting facility to regarded as an investment).
Secondly, is hotel industry a sunset industry?
Hotel industry is absolutely not a sunset industry. Mr. Lin from Marriott pointed out that the development of hotels requires a long period, which is usually around 4 years. When the market sees less investment, there comes an opportunity again. In the U.S., every 1,000 persons have on average 20 hotel rooms, while in China, every 1,000 persons have less than 6 hotel rooms. So the current situation in China is just an oversupply in the short term.
Thirdly, what’s the impact of Internet on our hotel industry?
It was mentioned in the discussion that Internet consumption currently accounts for less than 10 percent of retail sales in the U.S. but shows an annual growth rate of 16 percent. So the power of Internet is not scary, but it should not be ignored. Likewise, Internet would not upend the hotel industry. However, it could restructure the labor divisions as well as change some specific roles and functions in the hotel.
The speakers also talked about interactions between human and robots. All agreed that hotel industry is where people are serving others and being served, so the interactions between human beings are very important. Technology is absolutely the trend of future. What is more important is how to put humanity in the world of technology. Upscale hotels should never remove service by hotel staff, which is actually what the guests pay the premium for. Regarding whether robots can replace human beings, it should depend on different brands, different targeted tiers and different markets.
Horwath HTL has created a new brand identity – CHAT, tailored for China’s hotel and tourism industry! CHAT, the abbreviation for China Hotels And Tourism, encourages industry people to gather, create dialogue and network through the platform, as well as exchange and share experience and knowledge. CHAT Beijing is an enhancement of the “China Hotel Development and Financing Conference”, which has been held for ten years in Beijing. We further focus the conference specifically on hotel and tourism development and investment issues. There are 650 delegates attended 2014 CHAT Beijing with the largest segment being domestic hotel and tourism developers and owners. CHAT Shanghai is an upgrade of our annual “China Hotel Market Review and Outlook Seminar”, which has been held over the past six years. CHAT Shanghai focus on hotel asset management and operations. 460 delegates attended CHAT Shanghai in September 2013. CHAT Beijing and CHAT Shanghai held in Spring and Autumn respectively cover the full hotel and tourism business cycle from development and investment to asset management and operations. CHAT will enable you to achieve successful business development through its various powerful platforms!
About Horwath HTL
Horwath HTL is the management consulting of Crowe Horwath International that specializes in hotel, leisure and tourism industries. Established in Asia in 1987, Horwath HTL has consulted about 4,000 hotel and tourism related projects throughout the region (including over 1,200 projects in China) for clients ranging from individually held businesses to the world’s most prominent operators, developers, lenders, investors and industrial corporations. Horwath HTL now operates offices in several key cities throughout the Asia Pacific region, including Auckland, Beijing, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Mumbai, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney and Tokyo. Our offices work closely together to ensure that our clients receive a multi-skilled international perspective for their projects. Horwath HTL is also supported by the Horwath database, the largest and most complete hotel and tourism related database in the world. No other firm is better positioned to meet today’s and tomorrow’s industry challenges than Horwath HTL – Experts in the hotel, tourism and leisure industries.