It was a packed house at Rydges Sydney Airport Hotel last week for the APAC Revenue Management Summit, presented by the Australian Revenue Management Association (ARMA).

Over two days, from May 23-24, the conference brought together industry experts with a shared interest in revenue management to network, discuss and learn about a broad range of topics, from restaurant revenue to increasing productivity through artificial intelligence.

The theme for this year’s event was “Unstoppable” and signified the resilience and adaptability of the travel industry in the face of challenges.

From panel sessions, keynote presentations and workshops to the popular Genius Zone discussion hubs, there was plenty of opportunity to soak up the content and ask questions.

The conference kicked off with a Profit Boost workshop presented by former Majestic Hotels CEO Eoin Loftus of Loftus Business Advisory.

This engaging session focused on cost control and a strong message of protecting your profit. There was plenty of audience interaction with a “Show Me the Money” style segment.

Another highlight of Day 1 was the Women in RM Panel: Breaking Barriers and Driving Success. This session was moderated by Moana Heal – ARMA Advisory Board and featured Katrina Wallace, Felicity Harris, and Madhavi Nagarajan.

ARMA Chief Executive Melissa Kalan described it as “authentic, insightful and brilliant”.

“Delegates loved how authentic and real the discussion was – no fluff, just real, raw and honest,” she said.

Accommodation Australia CEO Michael Johnson presented to delegates at the APAC Revenue Management Summit

Bart Sobies, CEO and Founder of iBooked.Online and The Accommodation Show podcast, presented the “Game Changers” session, discussing how AI technology like ChatGPT can revolutionise marketing efforts and enhance business growth. He also provided valuable insights into the short-term rental market.

TrevPAR World Group CEO and Founder, Derek Martin, led a highly engaging opening session on Day 2 that explored a holistic approach to revenue management through which operators can enhance guest experience, and maximise revenue and profit potential. His strategies for implementing a Total Revenue Management (TRM) approach to business got delegates charged for another day of learning.

In a pre-recorded interview with Simon-Kucher & Partners’ Christoph Petzoldt, Accor VP Revenue and Analytics, Kent Warren, discussed everything from travel and business trends to loyalty and their impact on the bottom line.

“Revenue Managers need to become the Economists of the business,” Warren told delegates.

Duetto Director of Hospitality Solutions, APAC, Jeong Pyon’s knack for storytelling kept the audience engaged in the final sessions as he talked through the geopolitical landscape, economic challenges and the varying needs of international guests – from the US to Korea.

He also referenced a tactic used at Trump Hotels that demonstrated team members dedication and understanding of their property, and thereby greatly influenced a guest’s experience.

“At a Trump Hotel, every single employee from steward all the way to general manager had to know the names of all the paintings in the hotel, the artists, the story behind them, so everyone could feel like experts on the property,” he said.

“At that time, we thought that was pretty unique, but now we are living in a world where we all need to have that kind of mentality. We need to know and understand our business inside out.”

Also at the conference, the Vocational College of Hospitality and Tourism Maribor in Slovenia was declared the winner of the Global Revenue Management Student Challenge 2023. The students on the winning team receive the opportunity to complete the ARMA Certificate of Revenue Management Foundations.

Organiser Melissa Kalan thanked Platinum Partners Expedia Group, IDeaS Revenue Solutions, Oracle Hospitality and Duetto for making the event possible.