Following the extension of the company’s offering in 2021 with bespoke solutions for casting, entertainment and virtual assistant, interTouch is looking to further expand its portfolio of guest-facing technologies in 2022.
In this article we reflect on 2021 and find out what’s in store for interTouch this year with Michael Vargosko, Managing Director for Europe, the Middle East, Africa, India and the Subcontinent, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Ernest Teng, Managing Director for Asia Pacific.
What were some of the highlights for the business in 2021?
“In 2021 we focused on the extension of our offering in response to the rising need from hoteliers for touchless guest-facing technologies as the travel sector rebounds from the global pandemic. Our casting and in-room virtual assistant solutions are great examples of that. interTouch Cast and interTouch Assistant respectively allow guests to manage their digital guest experience using their own device to stream content, and use their voice for rooms requests and controls,” said Michael.
Ernest added: “We have also witnessed a growing demand for solutions that support the enhancement of the digital guest journey as a whole. In Asia, we’re also seeing strong interest in our casting solution and voice-enabled controls. For our customers that already have interTouch Cloud for their guest Wi-Fi network, interTouch Cast and interTouch Assistant are seamless additions to their guest-facing technology solutions with us as their one-stop provider.”
“To support the expansion of our solutions portfolio, we further strengthened our team last year and made several strategic appointments across the business and we look to further grow the team in 2022,” Michael continued. “In addition, we focused on growing our partner network and were very excited to announce our collaboration with Com.tel in April 2021, to further accelerate our mutual growth in Italy and Europe.”
Headquartered in Milan with 20 offices across the country, Com.tel has been servicing the Italian hospitality sector for over 15 years. Its leading telecommunications infrastructure solutions are available in over 200 hotels in Italy, and as a strategic partner of interTouch, the company now offers all interTouch solutions to hotels across the country to help them further enhance their digital guest journey.
“Speaking of Europe, we opened our Amsterdam office in September last year to support our growth here,” Michael said.
In Asia, the company moved offices in Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore and celebrated a landmark milestone for the business in China. “We are extremely proud of what the team has achieved in China over the past 20 years both from a commercial and reputation perspective. The long and deep relationships we have built with our customers have allowed us to ride through the Covid-19 pandemic together,” stated Ernest in the official press release in July 2021.
Another highlight for the team in Asia was the special recognition received from the company’s long-standing partner, Aruba Networks. Commenting on the award interTouch received, Ernest said: “we were thrilled to be named Hospitality Partner of the Year for Asia Pacific and Japan by Aruba, which is a huge honour for the team.”
2021 also saw the return of live events as Covid-19 restrictions eased around the globe and the interTouch team was delighted to take the road and skies again to attend some of the world’s leading hospitality technology events again including HITEC in the United States, TTG in Italy, The Stakeholder Conference in the UAE, No Vacancy in Australia, ExpoHotel in Mexico and customer events in South Korea.
“It was great to be able to reconnect with customers, partners and industry colleagues after a hiatus of live events during the pandemic,” said Michael. “There is so much we can do remotely today, but nothing replaces the value and joy of face-to-face interactions, especially in a people business like hospitality.”
In a year that marked recovery of the industry and a return to work for people around the world, interTouch continued to invest significantly in its people. “We encourage our team members to continue their professional development and obtain advanced certifications. Over the past 24 months our technical teams have focussed on certifications for critical skills and programs,” said Ernest.
With over a sixth of the interTouch team based in India, the company launched a vaccine drive for team members and their families when cases spiked in the country in April last year. interTouch paid for everyone to get their vaccine at a private clinic and matched the cost of the vaccine with a donation to The Akshaya Patra Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation headquartered in Bengaluru, India.
“The health and safety of our team members and their families remains our highest priority”, said Michael. “Our goal was to remove any potential obstacles in them receiving the Covid-19 vaccination to protect those that are vulnerable, and I am delighted to be able to say that everyone in the team was able to get fully vaccinated.”
What can customers and partners look forward to from interTouch in 2022 and beyond?
“We look to build on the new solutions we introduced in 2021. Our guest-facing technologies are not just for hotels but can be applied in other sectors as well and we look forward to introducing our solutions to other verticals this year as well. We have exciting discussions underway in many verticals and our teams are constantly looking at how to evolve our solutions to apply to new opportunities where we can enhance customer experience,” Michael said.
Learn more about interTouch here