News By/Courtesy: Riya Singh | 26 Jul 2020 12:56pm IST

HIGHLIGHTS

  • As we open up, can you look in the rearview mirror and tell us how the business of hospitality has changed?
  • There is a huge crisis of cash flow in the market. Do you see pent-up demand for travel in this situation?
  • What are the innovative solutions you have implemented during the lockdowns and plan to continue even after the crisis is over?

Q: As we open up, can you look in the rearview mirror and tell us how the business of hospitality has changed? 

A: These are challenging times, completely unprecedented, and the situation is in a constant state of evolution and fluidity. This is the first time the impact has been felt with such force across the globe.

We are currently in a deep contingency, survival mode—we are in for a rough ride for 12 months and maybe even longer. While we expect the occupancy rate to return to around 50 percent across the country by year-end, things are volatile. For every few steps we take forward, there are a few we take back. It is a very tentative approach.

I see the emergence of an entirely new category: shorter road travel and destinations you can reach on shorter flights.

Domestic travel has been picking up over the last few years and a lot of it has to do with more airports and better connectivity in the form of the road network. Over 90 percent of leisure travelers at our resorts across the country are domestic travelers and we only see that number increasing post the return to normalcy.

Q: There is a huge crisis of cash flow in the market. Do you see pent-up demand for travel in this situation?

A: Whilst we do expect some pent-up demand for our resorts, we should expect a gradual increase since this crisis has had an impact on cash flows. The business in the domestic market will depend on two crucial factors — the prevalent demand and economic conditions of that market. A full rebound will take time as assessing the impact is a challenging proposition, given the global scale of this crisis.

There will be an indirect impact on the amount of discretionary spend that the leisure customer will be willing to make, especially in the next six months. International travel will take longer to get back on track. Geographies have to first lift their restrictions and even when that happens, the willingness of people to travel recreationally will have certain psychological barriers.

Q: What are the innovative solutions you have implemented during the lockdowns and plan to continue even after the crisis is over?

A: This is a unique situation where everyone has to act with tremendous speed and agility. We have reviewed all our cost heads. Some measures and methods that we deem are relevant to our operations will now be a part of our standard operating processes with no compromise to execution. Self-hygiene has been important learning and we will continue to reiterate and reinforce the same.

I see a lot of transformation happening in the hotel space. Restaurants, for instance, will have less seating and extended timings.

Q: Have you done any retrenchment yet? Or salary cuts? 

A: We endeavor to ensure that we protect the jobs of our associates as an organization and to ensure we take care of our associates. While certain measures are required to be taken to tide over these challenging times, we have to ensure that we mitigate any long-term effects of this by undertaking temporary measures to sustain the business. 

Q: What is your strategy to garner business? 

A: We have a robust hotel specific recovery plans in place that leverage our loyalty program and our relationships with our partners and our customers. These plans resolutely focus on growing market share for our hotels by building back our occupancy levels at acceptable average rates.

Increasing local F&B business is another key component of the recovery plans. We have focused quite a bit of attention on our Marriott on Wheels project, a service available in 40 cities across India via the Swiggy platform. We also have launched some corporate deliveries to offices around JW Marriott Aerocity.

 

This article does not intend to hurt the sentiments of any individual, community, sect, or religion etcetera. This article is based purely on the author's personal opinion and views in the exercise of the Fundamental Rights guaranteed under Article 19(1)(A) and other related laws being enforced in India for the time being.

Section Editor: Pushpit Singh | 26 Jul 2020 17:47pm IST


Tags : #neerajgovii#interview

Latest News







Copyright Kalyan Krishna MediaZ Private Limited. All rights reserved. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials on these pages are copyrighted by Kalyan Krishna MediaZ Private Limited. All rights reserved. No part of these pages, either text or image may be used for any purpose. By continuing past this page, you agree to our Terms of Service, Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy and Content Policies.