The South East Asia Hotel Investors’ Summit returns for its third edition in May and will again feature top executives from both hotel owning groups and management companies and a range of cutting-edge topics.
SEAHIS focuses heavily on the issues facing hotel property investors. What topics are top-of-mind at the moment? Simon Allison, Chairman of hotel owners’ alliance HOFTEL which organizes the Summit notes:
The market in South-East Asia is generally booming, but investors in hospitality properties still face numerous challenges. These include:
• The need to pay numerous fees and taxes, to the online travel agents, to the brands and to the governments which between them can take almost half of what a guest pays the hotel
• The challenge of the sharing economy and of new forms of accommodation
• Oversupply as new properties get built
• The one-sided contracts which some hotel brands impose on them
• The dangers of relying too heavily on a single inbound market, like China – as the fall-off in demand in Phuket after the boat disaster showed last year
• Acquisitions of boutique brands by the majors – can these make money for their buyers and for the owners of the properties they manage
The last point is very much a relevant topic at the moment given the vast sums recently paid by Intercontinental for a stake in Six Senses, by Hyatt for Two Roads and by GIC for a stake in CitizenM.
These issues will be addressed at SEAHIS by many of the region’s most senior hotel and travel executives including Suchad Chiaranussati, CEO of SC Capital; Dillip Rajakarier, CEO of Minor International; Thomas Willms, CEO of Deutsche Hospitality; Brian Williams, Deputy Chairman of Swire Hotels; Aron Harilela, CEO of Harilela Hotels; Stephan Vanden Auweele, Chief Hospitality Officer of Asset World Corporation (TCC); Piyaporn Phanachet, CEO of U City; Andrew Langdon, SVP Development Asia, Accor; Mike Orgill, Director, Public Policy, Airbnb and Jake Stein, Senior Director, Owner Relations at Expedia.
“Last year almost 50% of all attendees were from groups which own or develop hospitality real estate, said Simon Allison, CEO of HOFTEL. “They want exciting and sometimes controversial content and we aim to deliver that. Our speakers are senior and so are most of the audience, so it’s a highly informed debate.”