Past Agenda

We’re constantly looking to inspire, grow and improve year on year so we always up the ante by introducing different themes, new keynotes, more panel sessions and workshops led by industry experts.

Here’s our previous conference agenda in 2018.

  • 07:30am - 08:30am
    Registration, Welcome Coffee and Tradeshow Open to Conference Delegates

    Pick up your lanyard and name tag at the registration desk and enjoy a coffee while networking with other conference delegates. The exhibitor tradeshow will open to all conference delegates.


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Conference Organiser
    Maximum Occupancy

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    08:30am - 08:35am
    Welcome Address

    Adrian Caruso, Conference Organiser
    Maximum Occupancy

    A welcome introduction to Maximum Occupancy 2018 by the conference MC and organiser, Adrian Caruso.


  • View bio

    Matthew Burke's biography

    Regional Manager - Pacific
    STR

    Matthew Burke is the Regional Manager Pacific at STR leading the growth in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. He has over a dozen years of experience in hospitality, with Hyatt and IHG in various roles including revenue management.

    08:35am - 08:55am
    Supply has come - So how are markets behaving & what opportunities are there?

    Matthew Burke, Regional Manager - Pacific
    STR

    STR's Matthew Burke takes a look under the headline performance metrics to uncover how Australian markets are behaving in conjunction with supply as a growing factor. The session aims to leave you with key actionable takeaways for you to leverage.


  • View bio

    Bryon Merzeo's biography

    Tourism, Hospitality & Leisure Consultant
    Deloitte Australia

    Bryon is a Tourism Consultant at Deloitte.

    Having studied at the University level in five countries, including a Masters in International Tourism Strategy, Bryon has a strong understanding of the global tourism marketplace. As part of the Deloitte Tourism Team, he analyses and forecasts tourism performance across Australia.

    Other tourism pursuits include being Sydney manager of Travel Massive, Hotels After Hours Events, and running a not-for-profit social travel company.

    08:55am - 09:25am
    2019 Outlook by the Numbers

    Bryon Merzeo, Tourism, Hospitality & Leisure Consultant
    Deloitte Australia

    In this interactive session, Bryon Merzeo from Deloitte will share the outlook for accommodation operators for 2019. He will also ask a panel of hoteliers their comments and opinions on the current and future market


  • View bio

    Alex Kahn's biography

    Market Manager Asia Pacific
    Triptease

    Alex leads the direct booking movement at the new Triptease Asia Pacific office. Prior to moving to Singapore, he served as a digital marketing consultant for independent properties that were in the process building a more established direct channel including Carvi Hotels in New York City. He is responsible for the Triptease accounts team based in Singapore.

    09:25am - 09:55am
    Hospitality begins online

    Alex Kahn, Market Manager Asia Pacific
    Triptease

    Our international keynote speaker is from the world’s leading ‘direct booking’ movement, Triptease. Based in Singapore, Alex will outline what the ultimate weapons are for direct bookings, how to build an emotional connection with guests and why tracking everything matters. A must listen keynote.

  • 09:55am - 10:25am
    Metasearch & Distribution in 2019

    In this panel session listen to both Metasearch companies and hoteliers discuss how traditional metas are responding to Google's growth (and what it means for hotels). Listen to how to come out on top on OTAs and how much of your budget should be spent on this channel.

    Panellists

    • Dai Williams's biography

      SVP - Global Partnerships
      SiteMinder

      From establishing SiteMinder’s second global office in London, to growing sales internationally and subsequently leading the expansion of the company’s EMEA operation as managing director for the booming region, Dai Williams has been instrumental in nurturing the success of the SiteMinder brand for almost a decade.

      With a drive to continually challenge the norm in travel technology, today Dai is responsible for a diverse partner network that generates in excess of $21 billion annually for SiteMinder’s 30,000 hotel customers around the world.

      Dai Williams, SVP - Global Partnerships
      SiteMinder

    • Gianluigi Bazzini's biography

      Senior Commercial Manager Hotels, APAC
      Skyscanner

      Gianluigi is originally from Milan (Italy) and living abroad since 2007.

      Recently relocated to Singapore, Gianluigi is Senior Commercial Manager APAC, Hotels at Skyscanner. During his career he has held various sales and account management roles at online travel agencies (Booking.com, in Barcelona) technology providers for online distribution management (SiteMinder, London) and hotel chains (Hotusa, Barcelona).

      Gianluigi holds a Masters in "Online Marketing for Tourism" at the Universitat de Barcelona and a specialization in "Online Hotel Distribution" issued by ESSEC Business School in Paris, France . 

      Gianluigi Bazzini, Senior Commercial Manager Hotels, APAC
      Skyscanner

    • Paul Gorman's biography

      Senior Manager – Owner Engagement
      Luxury Escapes

      Paul started his career in the Travel Industry in the early 1980’s in regional Australia. Paul moved into his own consulting business in 2009 – with clients such as  such as APT (Australian Pacific), Royal Melbourne Hospital travel procurement and Luxury Escapes in 2012. He moved into his current full time role Commercial Partnerships at Luxury Escapes in 2016.

      Paul has extensive experience across the travel industry, including hotel and airline contracting, sales and distribution planning via both online and traditional. He has a strong focus on win/win outcomes for all his partners and understands that one size does not fit all.

      Paul Gorman, Senior Manager – Owner Engagement
      Luxury Escapes

    • Scott Wegener's biography

      Head of OTA, APAC
      TripAdvisor

      Scott Wegener is Head of OTA’s for TripAdvisor in Asia Pacific. Based in TripAdvisor’s regional headquarters in Singapore, Scott is part of the management team responsible for its click-based, Meta advertising business in Asia Pacific, and specifically oversees the account management of the leading online travel agencies, with a team of 5 Account Managers.

      With a career in travel spanning over 12 years, Scott began working for Virgin Australia Airlines within the partnership team of the Velocity frequent flyer program and was subsequently recruited to TripAdvisor, where he has held a number of sales positions in both Australia & Singapore, culminating in his current role as Head of OTA’s.

      Not surprisingly, Scott has a passion for travel and discovering new places. His next stop will be enjoying the history, culture, white sandy beaches and amazing food of Sri Lanka.

      Scott Wegener, Head of OTA, APAC
      TripAdvisor

    • Elia San Martin's biography

      Head of Supplier Partnerships
      HotelsCombined

      Elia Martin is Head of Supplier Relations at HotelsCombined, the world's leading hotel price comparison platform. With over 12 years of industry experience, Elia joined Hotelscombined in 2012 and has since acquired a wealth of experience in Metasearch, from content to business development.

      She now leads a team of Account Managers and dedicated suppliers support while overseeing strategic partnerships. Elia is passionate about realizing the team’s purpose and constantly strives to find the perfect balance between driving successful commercial relationships while empowering confident choice for all HotelsCombined’s customers. 

      Elia San Martin, Head of Supplier Partnerships
      HotelsCombined

    Facilitator

    • Adrian Caruso's biography

      Founder, Managing Director
      Fastrack Group

      Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

      Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

      Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
      Fastrack Group


  • View bio

    AJ Shantiratnam's biography

    Senior Account Manager
    Tripadvisor

    AJ Shantiratnam is Senior Account Manager for TripAdvisor in Australia. AJ manages click-based advertising business for hotel chains and OTAs in Australia.With a blend of experience working for large OTA and hotel chains, AJ has over 10 years’ experience in the travel industry which he capitalises with his passion for data and business analysis. AJ has previously worked for Agoda.com and Frasers Hospitality leading account management and e-commerce performance.

    10:25am - 10:45am
    Influencing the Traveller Path to Purchase

    AJ Shantiratnam, Senior Account Manager
    Tripadvisor

    Did you know that 74% of global travellers who book accommodations make TripAdvisor a part of their online journey? In an increasingly competitive marketplace, hotels are looking for new ways to engage with travellers, differentiate their brands and increase conversions. In this session, you'll hear insights from the 2018 "Path to Purchase" study conducted by comScore analysing activity on more than 325 transactional sites globally, and get exclusive data-driven insights about traveller behaviour and purchase patterns.

  • 10:45am - 10:50am
    A Message from our Conference Sponsor

  • 10:50am - 11:15am
    Morning Tea by TripAdvisor

    Break time! Enjoy a delicious pastry and tea or coffee with fellow delegates with thanks to our conference sponsor, TripAdvisor.

  • 11:15am - 11:45am
    Coming soon to your hotel: The integrated revenue generation team

    With many hoteliers facing a downward trend in net room revenue, one main reason can be attributed to the lack of integration, coordination and singular focus and purpose among the core revenue management teams being the Revenue Management (S&M), Marketing Team (MT) and CRM teams. Quite often, these teams function in a rather disjointed fashion, leading to missed revenue opportunities, over dependency on the OTAs, alienated loyalty programs and worsened profitability. Listen to some of the country's top RMs and Marketing Managers on how they have started to work as one team.

    Panellists

    • Toby Berger's biography

      Managing Director & General Manager, APAC
      Revinate

      Toby Berger serves as the Managing Director of APAC at Revinate, the hospitality industry’s leading marketing and guest feedback software. Based in Singapore, Toby is responsible for customer success, operations, and revenue across Asia.

      Toby has been helping multinational travel and non-travel brands digitize their businesses and marketing for more than 20 years. Prior to joining Revinate, Toby was at Google for five years leading relationships and strategy with some of its largest clients across the APAC region, as well as the commercial strategy for Google’s programmatic and analytics ad-tech stack. During his tenure, he helped some of the world’s largest brands advance their digital marketing and better prepare for the adoption of new technologies.

      Before Google, Toby worked at Expedia where he served for five years building Expedia’s Media Solution business in Canada and then in APAC. Leading those businesses, he worked with travel partners and other non-travel brands to drive revenue on and off Expedia’s core sites.

      Toby Berger, Managing Director & General Manager, APAC
      Revinate

    • Heath Delfos , Senior Director of Revenue
      Accor Luxury Apartment Hotels

    • Alanna Eades 's biography

      Revenue & Distribution Manager
      One & Only Resorts

      Alanna Eades is the Revenue and Distribution Manager for prestigious Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley and has held this position for the last 3 years. In this time, Alanna assisted in achieving over 27% growth in room revenue for 2017. Prior to this she was the Revenue Manager at Sir Stamford Circular Quay and Reservations Manager at InterContinental Sydney. Predominately working within the luxury market Alanna has over 15 years in the hotel industry and Advance Diploma in Hotel Management & Hospitality. 

      Alanna Eades , Revenue & Distribution Manager
      One & Only Resorts

    • Fabian Bartnick's biography

      Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials
      LodgIQ

      Fabian is the Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials overlooking all aspects and operations within the region as well as the commercial part of LodgIQ. Fabian’s career covers all sides within hospitality including property, regional and corporate level roles as well as consulting and technology vendor roles across 4 continents and 25 countries. Fabian has helped built and apply price optimization, visual analytics and total revenue management tools across the globe and successfully turned around revenue performance in many companies by providing strategic consulting services as well developing powerful revenue analytics solutions that empower the business to maximize its revenue potential. Fabian has been on the Board of Directors for HSMAI South East Asa and currently sits on the HSMAI Advisory Board.

      Fabian Bartnick, Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials
      LodgIQ

    Facilitator

    • Melissa Kalan's biography

      Founding Director
      ARMA

      Melissa Kalan is the Managing Director of the Australian & NZ Revenue Management Association, providing Revenue Management (RM) support to industry and educational institutions, online corporate education platforms, face to face training and recruitment of talent.

      Melissa’s background includes Revenue Management with Qantas Airlines across both Domestic and International Networks. Melissa has assisted many properties with their RM goals and their need for well qualified Revenue Management employees. With a passion for Revenue Management in the accommodation industry Melissa has now established the Australian & NZ Revenue Management Association (ARMA) and is creating a fast growing network of domestic and international RM professionals.

      Melissa Kalan, Founding Director
      ARMA


  • View bio

    Stuart Davidson's biography

    Territory Sales Manager
    Kentico Software

    Stuart Davidson is a Territory Sales Manager for Kentico Software, a fully integrated all-in-one ASP.NET CMS, E-commerce and Digital Experience platform. Kentico prides itself on enabling its customers to create cutting-edge and highly personalised digital experiences across web and other digital channels. Kentico is trusted by some of the most recognisable brands in Australia and across the world, including LJ Hooker, Twining’s, ME Bank and Red Cross.

    Stuart has a background in Financial Services and has over 6 years experience in the digital space. He has a Bachelor of International Business from LaTrobe University and Master of Diplomacy and Trade from Monash University.

    11:45am - 12:05pm
    Understanding travel’s personalization revolution

    Stuart Davidson, Territory Sales Manager
    Kentico Software

    Today, travel executives realize, building more relevant and personalized customer experiences is critical because it helps differentiate their brands in an increasingly competitive market. However many hotel brands still struggle to meet the personalization demands of consumers. Listen to how to better understand personalisation to drive more direct bookings

  • 12:05pm - 12:35pm
    CEO Viewpoints

    In this session, listen to Australia and APAC hotel leaders and CEOs discuss the latest trends, issues and opportunities facing the accommodation industry in Australia. This panel session will be facilitated by one of APAC's leading accommodation news editors, Matthew Stephens from eHotelier.

    Panellists

    • Steven Wright's biography

      CEO
      BIG4 Holiday Parks

      Steven Wright is an experienced Chief Executive Officer and Company Director. He has held a number of Chief Executive Roles in the tourism, professional sports, major events and leisure industries. He was appointed Chief Executive of BIG4 Holiday Parks in October 2014. Prior to that he was the inaugural CEO of Tourism & Events Queensland, CEO of AFL Clubs Richmond and Brisbane Lions and the Australian Grand Prix Corporation. He is also on the Advisory Board for Delaware North. Steven holds a Bachelor of Economics and a Masters of Law both from Monash University and worked as a solicitor with Freehills for 8 years. 

      Steven Wright, CEO
      BIG4 Holiday Parks

    • Graham Perry's biography

      Managing Director, Australasia
      Best Western Hotels & Resorts

      Graham is a seasoned executive leader with experience working across the global travel, tourism, media and hospitality sectors.  The thread that flows through his career is his passion for marketing and the ever-evolving travel distribution and technology landscape.

      From 2016 Graham has worked with a number of successful travel start-ups including eRoam who are applying artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to transform travel distribution. He was appointed Managing Director, Australasia for Best Western Hotels & Resorts in May 2018.

      Graham Perry, Managing Director, Australasia
      Best Western Hotels & Resorts

    • Paul Constantinou's biography

      Chairman
      Quest Apartment Hotels

      With more than 40 years’ experience in accommodation and hospitality, Quest Founder and Chairman, Paul Constantinou is a respected industry leader. Paul founded Quest more than 30 years ago and has built the business to be the largest serviced apartment group in Australasia. 

      Today, Quest has 165 properties in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji and the UK. In July 2017 Quest announced an extension of its partnership with one of the world’s leading serviced residence network, following a 60 per cent increased investment in the business by Singapore-based The Ascott Limited (Ascott). 

      Paul Constantinou, Chairman
      Quest Apartment Hotels

    • Julian Clark's biography

      CEO
      Lancemore Group

      The Lancemore Group is one of Australia’s preeminent Boutique Hotel groups.  They operate six iconic boutique hotels - Mansion Hotel & Spa at Werribee Park, Lindenwarrah at Milawa, Larmont Sydney by Lancemore, Lindenderry at Red Hill, Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore & Lancemore Hill at Macedon Ranges.  Never a group to be boxed, the Lancemore Group also run a multi-award winning winery (Lindenderry Wines) and have a white label hotel management division. 

      Their properties regularly feature in best-of-the-best hotel lists and are the iconic hotels of their respective regions. Indeed, most Lancemore hotels have been regular finalists in the coveted Luxury Travel Gold List Awards, with the Mansion Hotel and Spa being in the top 5 “Australian Hotels” for the past three years.  With a core strength in Food & Beverage, many of the Lancemore Group’s restaurants are critically acclaimed and are mainstay’s in the Good Food Guide, whilst Lindenderry Wines is a multi-award winning Halliday 5* winery.

      Julian Clark, CEO
      Lancemore Group

    Facilitator

    • Matthew Stephens's biography

      President
      eHotelier

      Matthew is a graduate of the Blue Mountains International Hotel School in Australia, where he was named Alumni of the Year in 2013. He served as the VP Operations at the Celtic Manor Resort in Wales for five years, and came back to Australia to be the General Manager of the Shoal Bay Resort and Spa in NSW. Matthew is also well versed in the technology side of hospitality, having served as the IT Manager of Rydges Hotels and Resorts and most recently as the Director, Information Systems at Carnival Australia.

      Matthew Stephens, President
      eHotelier


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    12:35pm - 01:00pm
    Winning the Direct Booking Battle in 2019

    Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) and hotels still seem to be in an never ending battle for direct bookings according to many hoteliers. OTAs generally still call the shots with their billion dollar ad budgets, take the rewards, and leave hoteliers shaking with little power to win. Join direct booking expert, Adrian Caruso and listen to what you need to do to instantly regain market share from OTAs and win more clients via direct channels.

  • 01:00pm - 02:00pm
    Lunch

    Network with other attendees over a delicious buffet lunch.

  • 02:00pm - 02:30pm
    Blockchain, AI, voice, data: which rabbit hole should you run down?

    AI, Blockchain, Bots, Self check-in, automated personal service are all buzz-words being thrown around in the industry currently. But what do they mean to you and your future guest. This panel will discuss what is in now and out, and what we can learn from other industries who have used these detect and diagnose guest problems and provide an even greater level of personalised service.

    Panellists

    • Howard Phung 's biography

      IT Manager Australia
      Frasers Hospitality

      Sydney-based Howard Phung is an ambitious IT Manager with over 12 years’ experience, seven of those within the hospitality industry. His experience has led him to create strategic alliances with organisation leaders to align with and effectively support key business initiatives. His passion for IT means he is also keenly aware of the world’s most progressive tech companies.

      Howard joined Frasers Hospitality Australia in 2014 to manage IT for three existing properties and the pre-opening of Capri by Fraser Brisbane. A valued and key IT talent, Howard is making noise globally within Frasers Hospitality, which has close to 148 properties across Asia, Australia, Middle East, Africa and Europe.

      Howard Phung , IT Manager Australia
      Frasers Hospitality

    • Peter Bourke's biography

      Director of IT
      Event Hospitality and Entertainment

      Peter is the Director of Information Technology at Event Hospitality and Entertainment, who own and operate hotels, cinemas in Australia and abroad, along with the Thredbo ski resort.

      Peter has a strong technology background in defence, health and media before joining Event. 

      Peter Bourke, Director of IT
      Event Hospitality and Entertainment

    • Matthew Low 's biography

      CMO & Co-founder
      AiChat

      Matthew is currently the CMO and co-founder at AiChat - an award-winning chatbot solution provider with enterprise clientele across the region like Marina Bay Sands,  Cycle and Carriage, Omron Healthcare, Capitaland and more. Having come from multiple digital consultancy roles, he is passionate about digital disruptions and strategies that can impact and redefine business growth.

      Matthew Low , CMO & Co-founder
      AiChat

    Facilitator

    • Ted Horner's biography

      Managing Director
      E Horner & Associates Pty Ltd

      In 1989, Ted established E Horner & Associates Pty Ltd, a consulting practice specializing in technology consulting to the hospitality industry and is now widely respected as Australia's leading consultant in this area.

      Ted Horner, Managing Director
      E Horner & Associates Pty Ltd


  • View bio

    Drew Bowering's biography

    Senior Director, Market Management - Oceania
    Expedia

    Drew Bowering leads Expedia Lodging Partner Services in Oceania, responsible for the strategic direction and execution of the company’s account management and sales approach in the region.  He leads an organisation of 80 professionals throughout the region to establish and develop hotel partner relationships and help maximise their exposure to Expedia’s 200+ travel booking websites.   

    Drew is a regular on the industry speaker-circuit, seen as a thought-leader who specialises in delivering compelling presentation and discussion around technology and booking trends.

    Drew has worked for the Expedia group for more than eight years, holding a variety of senior roles across the business from the Global Partner Group to Market Management in the UK, USA, and Australia.

    Drew holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics from Loughborough University in the UK, where he grew up.  He currently resides in Sydney, Australia where he is raising his young family.

    02:30pm - 02:50pm
    Beyond Bookings: Engaging Travellers Throughout Their Journey

    Drew Bowering, Senior Director, Market Management - Oceania
    Expedia

    Listen to Expedia's Drew Bowering has he shares Expedia's key insights on how consumers research, shop and book and then importantly, bridge each insight with how hoteliers can influence them at every step of their travellers journey. Have a deeper understanding of the activities and decisions travellers participate in throughout the journey, and utilize the tools to help you provide a better guest experience, attract more guests, and be more competitive. A not to be missed presentation!


  • View bio

    Tamie Mathews's biography

    Revenue, Sales & Marketing Consultant
    Revenyou

    Tamie jumped on the Revenue Management bandwagon early on and saw the dawn of OTAs and online selling. With her extensive background in revenue management, Tamie found RevenYou, a revenue, sales & marketing support for the Independent Hotelier, 3 years ago to help owners grow their bottom line profit in an ever-changing world. She takes her passion for numbers and mixes it with her experience in turning around underperforming hotels, to help small to medium independent hotels achieve their business goals. In 2018 RevenYou partnered with HSMAI to help raise the level of professionalism of hoteliers in the industry.

    02:50pm - 03:20pm
    How to use your OTA channels to improve your hotels performance

    Tamie Mathews, Revenue, Sales & Marketing Consultant
    Revenyou

    Brought to you by HSMAI

    Learn how can you improve your results by working WITH your OTA channels, what type of data, reports, competitor information you can get and how to use that data to improve your performance, both through the OTA channel and your direct channels.

  • 03:00pm - 07:00pm
    Tradeshow Open to Public

    The exhibitor tradeshow will open to all eligible hoteliers and accommodation providers. Head to our registration page to get your FREE ticket!

  • 03:20pm - 03:50pm
    Afternoon Tea

    Sample the delicious array of cakes, biscuits and beverages on offer while networking with conference delegates.

  • 03:50pm - 04:20pm
    How can independent hotels compete against large chains?

    Join us for this interactive panel session with some of the industry's leading independent hoteliers and how they are winning against the large hotel brands and chains.

    Panellists

    • Jure Domazet's biography

      Managing Director
      Doma Group

      Upon completing his professional qualifications, Jure worked in commercial finance with a national bank and as a commercial lawyer with a national law firm. He applies this experience in the financing and structuring of the Groups investments and developments.

      As Managing Director, Jure has responsibility for the Groups strategic decisions and operations, ably assisted by his property, hotels and finance divisions.

      Jure Domazet, Managing Director
      Doma Group

    • Daniel Symonds's biography

      CEO / Co-Founder
      Collectic Hotels

      Collectic Hotels founders, Daniel Symonds and Toby Raphael, have created an eclectic group of hotels that challenge traditional accommodation offerings.  They include the Freespace property brand – a sustainable 'capacity capture' pop-up accommodation concept converting a variety of unutilised spaces, such as university colleges, during peak summer periods;  The Collectionist Hotel brand - a ‘choose your own room’ concept where all rooms have their own unique design, the first of which opened in Camperdown in May 2018; and stand-alone hotel offerings, The Urban Newtown, a conversion of the former Newtown RSL building into a boutique hotel complete with a post-apocalyptic garden atrium, and the Merchant Hotel a contemporary apartment style hotel located in the inner Sydney suburb of Summer Hill.  Collectic Hotels are continually exploring opportunities to expand their unique footprint in cities across Australia and New Zealand.

      Daniel Symonds, CEO / Co-Founder
      Collectic Hotels

    • Dave Baswal's biography

      COO/CFO
      Ovolo Hotels

      Currently the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Ovolo Hotels Australia, Dave brings with him over 15 years’ experience within the hospitality industry. An exemplary hospitality executive who creates strategic alliances with organisation leaders. With a proven experience in operations, strategic finance, corporate treasury, project management, distribution, IT, audit, financial analysis, sales and marketing within hospitality industry. Dave joined Ovolo Group’s Australian team with a goal of driving the Hong Kong-based brand’s further expansion into the Australian market.

      Dave has been instrumental in leading design and development initiatives for all new Australian based Ovolo Hotels including spearheading recent design projects for Ovolo Inchcolm Brisbane, Ovolo Nishi and the recently acquired Valley Hotel Brisbane which is to be re-branded in the near future.

      Dave is an effective communicator, and a member of CPA Australia. With a Masters in Professional Accounting and Masters in International Tourism and Hospitality from Griffith University in Gold Coast in addition to Bachelor in Hotel Management, Dave brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to lead the Ovolo Australia Team.

      Dave Baswal, COO/CFO
      Ovolo Hotels

    • Michael Smith's biography

      Group Operations Manager
      8Hotels

      Michael Smith wants to live in a hotelier world where creativity has no limits, hotels celebrate their individual stories and a better, more human interaction is formed with hotel guests. 

      With over 25 years of experience, Michael has worked for the leading global hotel management group Accor, where he was a General Manager for a number of well-renowned Australian hotels across all market segments. He is now the Group Operations Manager at 8Hotels, a boutique hotel group offering hotel management, development, asset management and specialised services to a range of businesses in its portfolio throughout Australia. 

      Michael’s role at 8Hotels is to provide guidance and direction to the business by implementing strategies that are individual by nature and ideas that shake the industry. Assessing new properties is an exciting aspect of the 8Hotel’s direction and Michael is in the midst of setting up new boutique hotels focusing on location, unique interiors and real personalised guest experiences. 

      When he is not occupied in his specialised areas of strategic planning, financial management, leadership and product development; you can find him tap dancing his way onto a baseball field or looking for unique ingredients at the grocers for his next homemade recipe.

      Michael Smith, Group Operations Manager
      8Hotels

    Facilitator

    • Adrian Caruso's biography

      Founder, Managing Director
      Fastrack Group

      Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

      Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

      Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
      Fastrack Group


  • View bio

    Michelle Allen's biography

    Head of Travel
    Google

    Michelle is Head of Travel for Google Australia. She joined Google in 2011 and has 14 years experience in the travel industry in France, Spain and Australia having previously worked for Amadeus. Michelle is passionate about understanding consumer behaviour and how the travel path to purchase has been impacted by digital transformation.

    04:20pm - 04:45pm
    The Future of Customer Experience

    Michelle Allen, Head of Travel
    Google

    Consumer expectations have never been higher than they are today. Technology and innovation are accelerating the pace of change, and consumers now expect a fast, seamless experience and greater assistance from the brands they interact with.

    In this presentation, Google's Head of Travel Michelle Allen will share insights and best practices when it comes to winning today's travel consumer and what should remain top of mind when thinking about the future.

  • 04:45pm - 05:30pm
    The Great Debate - Is Direct Business Really Profitable?

    As a hotelier, how often do you talk about whether all the funds you spend on getting direct bookings are worth it? Are direct bookings really profitable? Or are you spending more on getting them than you would on OTA commissions? There are polar opposite views on this in the hospitality industry, and that’s without thinking about who ‘owns’ the guest and the long term value of a loyal guest. Join us for this highly interactive, highly heated debate with some of the industry's leading hoteliers, OTA's and experts.

    Panellists

    • Tracey Foxall's biography

      Regional Manager – Oceania
      Booking.com

      Tracey Foxall is the Regional Manager for Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands based in Booking.com’s Sydney office, managing a team of 66 across the region. She joined Booking.com in 2011, initially focusing on the New Zealand market. Tracey has over 10 years of hotel industry experience, primarily in revenue management and also 3 years a Lecturer on a Diploma of Hospitality Management. She has a degree in Hotel Management from Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand. 

      Tracey Foxall, Regional Manager – Oceania
      Booking.com

    • Mark Tierney, Group Director of Revenue & Distribution
      Quest Apartment Hotels

    • Jason Moore's biography

      Managing Director
      Freestyle Resort Port Douglas

      Jason is a founding Director of Freestyle Resort, having had it constructed and opened in 2000. He has a wealth of knowledge on current direct booking insights for like operators. TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Awardee Freestyle Resort Port Douglas has been around for more than 18 years, having experienced the Ansett Crisis, the Global Financial Crisis and now, The Donald. 

      Jason Moore, Managing Director
      Freestyle Resort Port Douglas

    • Caspar Schmidt, CEO - International Business
      naked Retreats

    Facilitator

    • Fabian Bartnick's biography

      Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials
      LodgIQ

      Fabian is the Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials overlooking all aspects and operations within the region as well as the commercial part of LodgIQ. Fabian’s career covers all sides within hospitality including property, regional and corporate level roles as well as consulting and technology vendor roles across 4 continents and 25 countries. Fabian has helped built and apply price optimization, visual analytics and total revenue management tools across the globe and successfully turned around revenue performance in many companies by providing strategic consulting services as well developing powerful revenue analytics solutions that empower the business to maximize its revenue potential. Fabian has been on the Board of Directors for HSMAI South East Asa and currently sits on the HSMAI Advisory Board.

      Fabian Bartnick, Vice President of Asia Pacific & Commercials
      LodgIQ

  • 05:30pm - 07:30pm
    Networking Drinks & Tradeshow

    Join us for a drink while you network with other attendees and exhibitors.

  • 08:00am - 08:40am
    Registration and Welcome Coffee

    Grab a coffee and get ready for day full of learning!

  • 08:40am - 08:45am
    Welcome Address

    A quick intro to Maximum Occupancy day 2.


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    08:45am - 09:30am
    Book Direct Blueprint 2019

    Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    In this highly interactive workshop you will learn how to formulate or improve your hotel's 'Direct Booking Strategy' through proven techniques and strategies. Adrian Caruso, one of the industry's leading Direct Booking strategists will touch on all major digital channels and data practices and look at how they should be applied as we head into 2019. A not to be missed hands-on workshop. Walk away with a blueprint to drive more direct booking in 2019.


  • View bio

    Mauro Risch's biography

    Hotel & Resort Photographer
    The Hotel Photographer

    Over the last decade, Mauro Risch has become known simply as The Hotel Photographer. With 50 000 followers on Instagram, Mauro Risch enjoys a highly engaged following and one of the most popular hotel and resort photographers on social media. He is trusted by PR and marketing teams, hotel managers and executive brand teams right across the Asia Pacific region. Mauro is the preferred photographer for some of the top operators across the industry, including IHG, Accor, Wyndham, Radisson, Meriton and TFE.

    09:30am - 10:00am
    The art of great hotel photography

    Mauro Risch, Hotel & Resort Photographer
    The Hotel Photographer

    Listen and learn from Mauro on what makes a great image and how to ensure your images are working for you by increasing leads and sales. With 50 000 followers on Instagram, Mauro Risch enjoys a highly engaged following and one of the most popular hotel and resort photographers on social media. Mauro is the preferred photographer for some of the top operators across the industry, including IHG, Accor, Wyndham, Radisson, Meriton and TFE. A workshop not to be missed!

  • 10:00am - 10:20am
    Morning Tea

    Grab a tea or coffee and discuss the morning sessions with your colleagues.


  • View bio

    Peter Turner's biography

    Customer Strategy Superhero
    Customer Frame

    Peter is a global leader in transforming SMEs, large businesses + organisations through the eyes of their customers. As a customer strategy catalyst, he brings over 20 years of experience in consulting projects for both commercial + government organisations in the UK, Australia + throughout Europe. With unrivalled global business credentials + an enviable cross-industry portfolio - American Express, Terry White ChemMart, PPQ, EFTPOS, RICOH, DEFRA, HMRC & News Limited - he is known to be one of the founding technicians of customer-led change, with a style that is engaging + thought-provoking. His recent projects have focused on the transformation of the customer experience at all levels for state + regional tourism organisations across QLD, NSW + VIC.

    10:20am - 11:05am
    Customer Satisfaction is BULLSH#T

    Peter Turner, Customer Strategy Superhero
    Customer Frame

    For decades, hoteliers have relied on Customer Satisfaction ratings to inform business choices + operational improvements. In this thought-provoking workshop, Peter reveals why customer satisfaction metrics are prone to failure, what customer experience actually is + how you can smash your goals through a new perspective that actually drives ongoing revenue, yield + ... maximum occupancy. Not to be missed, you're guaranteed to walk away with a reframed perspective on measuring your performance from the customer's perspective, leaving armed with the knowledge to make it a reality.


  • View bio

    Guillaume Dupont's biography

    Head, Mid-Market
    Criteo ANZ

    Guillaume Dupont is Criteo’s Head of Mid-Market for Australia and New Zealand. Based in Sydney, he is responsible for leading and growing the Mid-Market Commercial team for the ANZ region. He also develops Mid-Market’s strategies locally and partners with the global team to make critical business decisions. 

    Prior to working at Criteo, Guillaume had 5 years of experience in Australia’s digital sales and marketing industry. His early experience in a retail ecommerce business helped him develop interests in digital marketing channels, he then moved to eBay advertising where he further expanded his retail commerce expertise. 

    11:05am - 11:35am
    How dynamic remarketing works for hotels

    Guillaume Dupont, Head, Mid-Market
    Criteo ANZ

    In this workshop you will learn about the importance of multiple touch points in hotel marketing and how this can be achieved through dynamic remarketing. See case studies of hotels who have leveraged this strategy with great success and have your questions answered by the world's leading dynamic remarketing company.


  • View bio

    Melissa Kalan's biography

    Founding Director
    ARMA

    Melissa Kalan is the Managing Director of the Australian & NZ Revenue Management Association, providing Revenue Management (RM) support to industry and educational institutions, online corporate education platforms, face to face training and recruitment of talent.

    Melissa’s background includes Revenue Management with Qantas Airlines across both Domestic and International Networks. Melissa has assisted many properties with their RM goals and their need for well qualified Revenue Management employees. With a passion for Revenue Management in the accommodation industry Melissa has now established the Australian & NZ Revenue Management Association (ARMA) and is creating a fast growing network of domestic and international RM professionals.

    11:35am - 12:20pm
    Revenue Management: Change helps us leverage opportunity

    Melissa Kalan, Founding Director
    ARMA

    One thing we know for sure is the only consistent thing is change, and amongst change, revenue management will continue to drive results for your business.

    Often there is a sole focus on apparent market demand and juggling daily price points, however, a good revenue management strategy focuses on the hidden opportunities. Join this workshop as we work through some critical revenue management focus areas for your business.

  • 12:20pm - 01:20pm
    Lunch

    Enjoy a full buffet lunch with your fellow attendees.


  • View bio

    AJ Shantiratnam's biography

    Senior Account Manager
    Tripadvisor

    AJ Shantiratnam is Senior Account Manager for TripAdvisor in Australia. AJ manages click-based advertising business for hotel chains and OTAs in Australia.With a blend of experience working for large OTA and hotel chains, AJ has over 10 years’ experience in the travel industry which he capitalises with his passion for data and business analysis. AJ has previously worked for Agoda.com and Frasers Hospitality leading account management and e-commerce performance.

    01:20pm - 02:05pm
    Maximising your presence on TripAdvisor

    AJ Shantiratnam, Senior Account Manager
    Tripadvisor

    Want to reach 456 million monthly visitors on TripAdvisor and influence potential guests from around the globe? In this workshop you will get key insights on how to make the most of your presence on the world's largest travel site by leveraging the latest data and insights, and managing your online reputation.
    In this workshop we will cover:
    - Best practices for monitoring, managing and responding to guest reviews
    - Tips on how to optimise the latest tools and features on TripAdvisor

  • 02:05pm - 02:20pm
    How to use the GDS channel to improve your hotels performance – brought to you by HSMAI

    Benjamin Weinmann, Manager, Hotel Distribution / President
    Amadeus IT / HSMAI

    In this session, we will focus on the GDS channels: Should your property be on the GDS? How much business can you expect through this channel, costs compared to other channels. Solid advice from the experts in the GDS channel. Learn the ideal property for the GDS channels, the tricks to show your “best side” to the travel agency community, and how much business and what type of business is generated through these channels.


  • View bio

    Tamie Mathews's biography

    Revenue, Sales & Marketing Consultant
    Revenyou

    Tamie jumped on the Revenue Management bandwagon early on and saw the dawn of OTAs and online selling. With her extensive background in revenue management, Tamie found RevenYou, a revenue, sales & marketing support for the Independent Hotelier, 3 years ago to help owners grow their bottom line profit in an ever-changing world. She takes her passion for numbers and mixes it with her experience in turning around underperforming hotels, to help small to medium independent hotels achieve their business goals. In 2018 RevenYou partnered with HSMAI to help raise the level of professionalism of hoteliers in the industry.

    02:20pm - 02:50pm
    How to use your OTA channels to improve your hotels performance Part 2

    Tamie Mathews, Revenue, Sales & Marketing Consultant
    Revenyou

    Brought to you by HSMAI

    In part 2 of this workshop, Tamie will continue to share her wealth of experience in managing the OTA channels, and give you some solid tactics to take back to your hotel and use to improve your business. Everyday in every hotel in every city and every town, there is a hotelier telling another hotelier that they hate OTAs and they charge too much in commission. It is a familiar story and one we hear repeated every day. BUT and that is a big BUT, what would you as a hotelier do without them and are you using them wisely? Learn
    • 15% commission vs direct is ‘free’ … but is it really?
    • What would you do if you didn’t have a connection to any OTA’s?
    • What would you need to change internally and how would you fill the gaps left by OTA’s?
    • How would you replace that business?
    • Cost of doing business – necessary evil or important part of your strategy?
    • Using the OTAs to fill your peak and off-peak dates
    • Discount or value add?
    • Treating each OTA as an individual entity
    • Know your OTA’s target audience
    • Reviews

  • 02:50pm - 03:15pm
    Afternoon Tea

    Take a break and grab something to eat before our final session of the day.

  • 03:15pm - 04:00pm
    Conversion Optimisation, Analytics and eCommerce Tracking 101

    A wise man once said 'If you can't measure, you can't manage or control the outcome’. In this session you will learn how to create the optimal eCommerce tracking set-up to track
    where your bookings are coming from, conversion goals and booking funnel visualisation (this is a must-have). You will also learn some conversion optimisation quick wins that you can implement on your own website straight away!

    Facilitator

    • Essen Tsou's biography

      Digital Marketing Manager
      Fastrack Group

      Essen has a wealth of knowledge in digital marketing for the hotel and travel industry. Essen has over 5 years digital marketing experience in the hotel/travel industry, previously working within the Global Marketing Team at Expedia. Essen brings in her expertise across online acquisition channels, including paid media, remarketing and social direct response.

      Essen Tsou, Digital Marketing Manager
      Fastrack Group

    • Gerard Smith's biography

      Business Development Manager
      Fastrack Group

      A business development and relationship specialist, Gerard has held senior management roles in some of New Zealand’s leading digital agencies, before returning to Brisbane after 12+ years. More recently Gerard has held senior management roles with some of Australasia's leading digital agencies, where he focussed on building successful commercial partnerships with leading tourism organisations, including Tourism New Zealand, Real Journeys, Skyline Enterprises and Hobbiton, to name a few.

      Gerard Smith, Business Development Manager
      Fastrack Group

  • 04:00pm - 05:00pm
    Ask anything round tables

    Delegates often say this is the best session of the entire conference. This is your opportunity to sit down with the experts and gain answers and insights for your hotel in a consultation style format. This year's roundtables will include:
    - Revenue Management
    - Websites
    - Digital Marketing (SEO, EDM, SEM, Social)
    - Reputation Management

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