Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Starkov

Max Starkov

President & CEO, Hospitality eBusiness Strategies Inc

Max Starkov is Chief eBusiness Strategist at Hospitality eBusiness Strategies, Inc. in New York City. He advises companies in the Travel and Hospitality verticals on their eBusiness and eDistribution strategies. Mr. Starkov has teamed up with HVS International Technology Strategies to provide eDistribution strategy consulting services to the hospitality industry. Mr. Starkov also teaches a graduate course on "Hospitality/Tourism eDistribution Systems" at New York University. Mr. Starkov has an extensive eBusiness and Web travel technologies experience. He co-founded and served as CEO and Director of two eBusiness companies: Whale Media, Inc. (B2B travel technology infrastructure provider to the hospitality, corporate travel and convention and meetings markets) and Travelbreak.com, Inc. (B2C online travel marketplace). Under his leadership Whale Media won the prestigious 2001 Worldwide Microsoft RAD Award for its SmartSuite ASP technology applications for hospitality. Mr. Starkov has 17 years experience in pioneering and building successful travel businesses and eBusiness strategies for national and multinational hospitality and travel companies. He has written numerous reports, industry research, and articles. Mr. Starkov has an MBA degree, Beta Gamma Sigma Honors, from Fordham University in New York and an MS in Global Economics degree.

Mr. Starkov can be contacted at 212-752-8186 or max@hospitalityebusiness.com

Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.