Editorial Board   

Mr. Federman

John Federman

CEO, eStara

John Federman is CEO of eStara, a leading provider of multi-channel communications solutions that connect buyers and sellers. eStara's customer interaction tools increase marketing and sales conversion rates for large enterprises including Starwood, Hilton, Red Lion, and Club Med. Other clients include Verizon, Amazon.com and Continental Airlines. eStara's Click to Call service seamlessly transitions online consumers, together with the context of their session, into immediate telephone or PC-based voice contact with the business. Their call tracking service provides a flexible, scalable call tracking and monitoring service that allows companies to track leads generated in any print or online medium. As Chief Executive Officer, John Federman is responsible for eStara's strategic direction, growth and corporate vision. Mr. Federman brings more than 20 years of experience with innovative information technology and media companies to eStara. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Federman was co-founder, president and CEO of Dotomi, an Internet advertising company, and was responsible for its successful rollout in the United States. Mr. Federman has extensive experience in developing start-up companies and driving them to growth and profitability. As president and CEO of AdSmart, a CMGI company, he grew the company tenfold and orchestrated its sale to Engage. Following AdSmart, he successfully repositioned Newmediary from a destination site to an ASP supporting a private label directory network, and sold that company to CNet Networks. Mr. Federman's career began at Ziff Davis Publishing, where he held a number of positions culminating as Publisher of PC Week, the world's Number 1 trade journal. Mr. Federman is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business and Art.

Mr. Federman can be contacted at 703-842-4436 or John.federman@estara.com

Coming up in September 2020...

Hotel Group Meetings: Demand vs. Supply

It is a great time for hotel group meetings. It is expected that once again this sector will grow by 5-10% in 2020, partly due to the increasing value of in-person group meetings. Because people now spend so much time in front of their screens, face-to-face interactions have become a more treasured commodity in our modern world. Plus, the use of social media reinforces the value of engagement, discussion, conversation, and networking - all areas where group meetings shine. Despite this rosy outlook, there is a concern that demand for meetings far exceeds the supply of suitable venues and hotels. There are very few "big box" properties with 500-plus rooms and extensive conference facilities being built, and this shortage of inventory could pose a serious challenge for meeting planners. In addition to location concerns, the role of the meeting planner has also evolved significantly. Planners are no longer just meeting coordinators - they are de facto travel agents. Cultural interactions, local dining, experiential travel, and team-building activities are all now a part of their meeting mix. Plus, they have to cater to evolving tastes. Millennials are insisting on healthier venues and activities, and to meet their demands, hotels are making yoga breaks, fresh-pressed juices, plant-based diets, state-of-the-art gyms, and locally-sourced menus available. Millennials are also insisting that meeting venues practice Corporate Social Responsibility, which means upholding sustainable and ethical values; investment in the local community; health and well-being of employees; and general business practices that reflect being good citizens of the planet. Finally, there is a growing trend to merge meetings with other local events, such as music festivals, sporting events, and cultural attractions. The December Hotel Business Review will report on issues relevant to group meetings and will document what some hotels are doing to support this part of their operations.