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PROGRAMME

Episode 2: BC, Global. DC, Local. AC, Which Way Forward?

April 29, 6:00PM-8:15PM (Singapore Time, GMT+8)
Broadcast Venue: Fairmont Singapore

BC (Before Covid), we lived in an open, global world where travel connected 1.46 billion of us in 2019. DC (During Covid), looking at the UNWTO Tourism Recovery Tracker, as of December 2020, international tourist arrivals dropped by 74%. DC, the world went local, and the impact will be felt deeply in the AC (After Covid) era. What happened to global brands which depended on cross-border travel? What has happened to travel unicorns and their dreams of global network effect? What will happen to local tourism businesses which built for a global world? How do we build stronger local roots, bring back global, and build back better?

Episode 2
2021-04-29
18:00 - 18:10
The Wrap
18:10 - 18:40
Spotlight: Global, Local, Which Way Forward?

What happened to brands with global dreams in the Year of No Travel? How are they thinking about the future? What happened in 2020 that made them rethink their business models, their organizational structures and their view of the future? What are they doing to prepare for an AC world?

 

Moderator:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Panelists:
Spotlight: Global, Local, Which Way Forward? image
Rohit Kapoor
CEO, India & South East-Asia (INSEA)
OYO
Spotlight: Global, Local, Which Way Forward? image
Catherine So
Managing Director, Asia Pacific Focus Markets
Expedia Group
Spotlight: Global, Local, Which Way Forward? image
Weichun Liu
Co-founder & Executive Vice President
KKday
18:40 - 18:55
Campfire Chat: In Search of Unicorns, Have They Become More Elusive?

In March this year, Singapore-based growth equity investment firm Asia Partners closed its inaugural fund Asia Partners I LP at US$384 million in commitments. In 2019, the year of its founding, founding partner, Oliver Rippel, told WiT South-east Asia could produce between 20 and 30 unicorns. And he believes that in travel, local heroes can win over global players. We catch up with him to find out if his views have changed DC and how he sees the AC tech startup space in the region.

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Speaker:
Campfire Chat: In Search of Unicorns, Have They Become More Elusive? image
Oliver Rippel
Founding Partner
Asia Partners
18:55 - 19:00
Opinion: What Happened To Reviews In A Year Of Local Travel?

It is widely believed that domestic travellers are more difficult, demanding customers. Was this borne out in hotel reviews in 2020 when most travel was local? Did negative reviews outnumber positive ones? Does culture have something to do with it? We ask someone who’s paid a lot of attention to this space to do an analysis and share her insights.

Opinion: What Happened To Reviews In A Year Of Local Travel? image
Emilie Couton
Vice President Digital Marketing, Loyalty & Guest Experience South East Asia, Japan & South Korea
Accor
19:00 - 19:10
Campfire Chat: Secrets Of A Chinese Luxury Brand

As part of our “Bridging China with Asia” series in collaboration with TravelDaily, we put the spotlight on China’s second largest hotel company by number of rooms, HUAZHU Group (NASDAD:HTHT), which has made moves into the luxury and upscale segment. Once on an expansion path, has Covid changed its plans? How is it thinking differently about its products and future? What secrets can it share about winning AC, whether locally or globally?

 

Interviewer:

 

Joseph Wang
Chief Commercial Officer
TravelDaily

 
 

Speaker:
Campfire Chat: Secrets Of A Chinese Luxury Brand image
Nong Xia
Executive Vice President & CEO, Global High-end Hotels Business Unit
HUAZHU Group
19:10 - 19:15
Opinion: What Happened To Search In A Year Of Local Travel?

What happened to travel searches when the world went local? What signals can we glean from this quick analysis of search patterns on how consumers are dreaming and thinking about travel? Could it give us clues as to which light is coming on first, at the end of the tunnel? We go searching for the answers with the world’s biggest search engine.

Opinion: What Happened To Search In A Year Of Local Travel? image
Hermione Joye
Sector Lead, Travel & Vertical Search, APAC
Google
19:15 - 19:55
Spotlight: Shophouses, Ryokans & Villas – Surviving The Storm, Facing The Future

The shophouse is to Penang as the ryokan is to Japan and villas are to island destinations such as Phuket. All represent authentic experiences in their respective destinations and were desired by inbound travellers. Their stories of heritage and culture resonated with foreign guests and in the last few years, ryokans in Japan opened their doors to foreign guests in line with Japan’s inbound tourism boom. How did each of these entrepreneurs adapt DC, and how are they preparing for an AC world? Should they adjust their experience for a local and regional customer, because longhaul may take a while to return? Plus, we take a bird’s eye view of the impact on local economies in tourism-dependent destinations.

 

Moderator:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Setting The Stage:

 

Margaux Constantin
Partner, Dubai/Public & Social Sector Practice
McKinsey & Company

 
 

Panelists:

Spotlight: Shophouses, Ryokans & Villas – Surviving The Storm, Facing The Future image
Chris Ong
Founder
Georgetown Heritage & Hotels, Malaysia
Spotlight: Shophouses, Ryokans & Villas – Surviving The Storm, Facing The Future image
Aya Aso
Founder & CEO, SAVVY Collective;
Co-founder & CEO, PerkUP, Japan
Spotlight: Shophouses, Ryokans & Villas – Surviving The Storm, Facing The Future image
Kittisak Pattamasaevi
CEO
Montara Hospitality Group
19:55 - 20:00
Stats & Stuff, by Phocuswright
20:00 - 20:15
Case Study: Tales From A City/Convention Hotel

Imagine. You have 1,252 rooms in one hotel and 778 rooms in the other. Throw in 70,000 square feet of event space. Oh, and wait, your hotel is situated in small city state of 5.89m people where there is almost zero domestic market, and you’re mostly about corporate travel and MICE business? How do you survive a global pandemic which shuts down borders, where your staff are at the frontline, where all your revenues dry up almost immediately? Yes, it’s been quite a ride for the Raffles City Convention Centre and its two hotels, Swissotel The Stamford and Fairmont. Let’s dig into the case study of how this city property rode it out, adjusted its business and the cool things it’s done in the past 12 months, from farming to IT.

 

Interviewer:

 

Yeoh Siew Hoon
Founder
WiT

 
 

Speaker:
Case Study: Tales From A City/Convention Hotel image
Marcus Hanna
General Manager
Fairmont Singapore and Swissôtel The Stamford
20:15 - 20:20
Lifeline: Confessions Of A Foreigner In Paradise

In this session, where anything goes, we throw out our lifeline to a foreigner trapped in paradise as he shares the joys and pains of being confined to a local world when once he roamed freely like the global soul he is.

Lifeline: Confessions Of A Foreigner In Paradise image
Timothy Hughes
Vice President, Corporate Development
Agoda
20:20
End Of Episode 2
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Programme correct at time of publishing
All times shown are in SGT (GMT +8)