Economic recovery has been slow to reach many parts of the global hospitality sector, and one of the most sluggish areas to improve has been the meetings and association business. Even as business activity resumes, the recession and other events, including the Icelandic volcano eruption, have caused firms to review their corporate meeting travel patterns. In parallel, a significant disruption with profound implications for the hospitality sector is occurring in the form of technology-enabled business-travel substitution. Corporate travel departments seeking innovative ways to reduce costs, enhance productivity, reduce carbon footprints, and transform the meeting experience are turning to rapidly maturing video and virtual meeting technologies to replace conventional transient and event-oriented business travel. Seeing the possibilities for serving this market segment, several leading hotel chains have introduced video and virtual meeting technologies as lines of business. For companies willing to adapt, new strategies and business models to capitalize on this disruption will drive competitive advantage and greater market share.
Lock, H., & Macaulay, J. (2010). Hospitality business models confront the future of meetings [Electronic article]. Cornell Hospitality Industry Perspectives, 1(4), 6-15.