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Press Releases: Press Releases

2018 Middle East Hospitality Tech Trends to be Showcased at Upcoming HTNG Event

Monday, December 11, 2017  
Posted by: Emily Wilson

CHICAGO (December 11, 2017) - HTNG releases the 2018 Middle East Conference agenda with topics focusing on blockchain, AI and machine learning, GDPR and VAT implementation in the Middle East.

Along with informative and engaging sessions, HTNG conferences provide a plethora of networking opportunities with local, regional and global industry experts. HTNG's seventh Middle East Conference in Dubai will take place at the Jumeirah Mina A'Salam from 23-24 January 2018.


The event will include the following sessions:

  • Blockchain and Hospitality - With the concept of blockchain arising across many industries, it is critical for hospitality professionals to have a basic knowledge framework for understanding blockchain, separating fact from hype and assessing where blockchain can be applicable in hospitality. Learn from Blockchain Consultant, Jessica Houlgrave, about the basics of blockchain technology at a strategic level, with guidance on key variations and the applications where they may make sense.
  • VAT Implementation in the Middle East - The VAT implementation will affect all companies in the region and is an important shift for everyone. Kate Bacon, Deloitte, will help the audience discover helpful tips on how to ensure your company complies with these new obligations both inside and outside of the hospitality sector.
  • The AI Age: How Will Machine Learning and Intelligence Impact Travel and Hospitality? - We see AI and machine learning rapidly developing in the hospitality industry with the use of voice commands, chatbots, robotics and more. Kanishka Agiwal, IBM Corporation, will provide a glimpse into the near future and explore how it will affect our industry.
  • Are You Ready for GDPR? - Global hospitality chains, trading partners and vendors who conduct business within the European region need to navigate the pitfalls associated with compliance to these updated laws. Richard Chudzynski and Matthew White of PwC will help your company make sure you're ready to properly abide by this regulation.


Other session topics include:

  • Aligning HTNG with Industry Priorities
  • Case Study: Using AI and Machine Learning to Improve Guest and Employee Experience
  • GDPR Drill Down and Q&A
  • IT Leadership Panel
  • Reinvigorate Your Executive Committee


Other conference speakers include:

  • Marwan Al Ali, Group CIO, Jumeirah Group
  • Willem Both, Executive Vice President IT, Kerzner International Resorts Inc.
  • John Burns, President, Hospitality Technology Consulting
  • Craig Cochrane, SVP Human Resources, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts
  • Nigel Hattersley, Sr. Director IT Middle East and Africa, Marriott International
  • Ted Horner, Managing Director, E. Horner & Associates
  • Amro Khoudeir, Director of Digital Products, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts
  • Alexander Lee, SVP - Marketing, Revenue Management, Distribution, Jumeirah Group
  • Michael Mrini, Director of Information Technology, Edwardian Hotels London
  • Joe Tesfai, Corporate Director of IT, Dubai Parks & Resorts
  • Aleksandra Woźniak, Digital Content Assistant Manager, Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts


Conference registration is open to any full-time employee of a company who owns, manages or franchises a hotel or hospitality venue. For all other industry participants, HTNG membership is required.

For registration or for more information on the conference, please visit:

For HTNG membership information or sponsorship opportunities, please contact




About Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG)

The premier technology solutions association in the hospitality industry, HTNG is a self-funded, nonprofit organization with members from hospitality companies, technology vendors to hospitality, consultants, media and academic experts. HTNG's members participate in focused workgroups to bring to market open solution sets addressing specific business problems. HTNG fosters the selection and adoption of existing open standards and also develops new open standards to meet the needs of the global hospitality industry.

Currently more than 400 corporate and individual members from across this spectrum, including world leading hospitality companies and technology vendors, are active HTNG participants. HTNG's Board of Governors, consisting of 24 top IT leaders from hospitality companies around the world, itself has technology responsible for over 2.5 million guest rooms and world-leading venues. HTNG publishes workgroup proceedings, drafts and specifications for all HTNG members as soon as they are created, encouraging rapid and broad adoption. HTNG releases specifications into the public domain as soon as they are ratified by the workgroups. For more information, visit