Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Punyapu

Anil Punyapu

Vice President, Cvent

With nearly a decade of experience in the meetings industry, Anil Punyapu drives strategy for and leads sales of enterprise meetings solutions at Cvent, the world's largest meetings management technology company. With more than 800 employees worldwide and over 90,000 users in 40 countries, Cvent offers web-based software for meeting site selection, online registration, meetings management and marketing, and web surveys. The company's online site selection and Request for Proposal (RFP) tool, the Cvent Supplier Network, is expected to carry more than $4 billion in group business to hotels and special event venues in 2011. In his current role, Mr. Punyapu combines technology expertise with deep knowledge of the meetings industry to shape development of Cvent's Strategic Meetings Management product, marketing initiatives and sales and training processes. Under his leadership, Cvent helps some of the largest pharmaceutical, financial, consumer product and healthcare organizations centrally manage enterprise-wide meetings spend and streamline meetings processes. Previously, Mr. Punyapu built Cvent's Chapter Sales Division, which focused on chapter-based associations. Prior to Cvent, Mr. Punyapu co-founded Entertainment Ventures, a hedge fund of funds based in the Washington, D.C. area, and also served as a Senior Associate at Friedman Billings Ramsey (FBR), a full-services investment firm.

Mr. Punyapu can be contacted at 517-830-2466 or apunyapu@cvent.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.