This website uses cookies to store information on your computer. Some of these cookies are used for visitor analysis, others are essential to making our site function properly and improve the user experience. By using this site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Click Accept to consent and dismiss this message or Deny to leave this website. Read our Privacy Statement for more.
Press Releases: Press Releases

HEDNA Joins HTNG/OpenTravel Partnership to Strengthen Focus Around Distribution

Thursday, September 12, 2019  
Posted by: Emily Wilson

CHICAGO (September 12, 2019) – The Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA) has joined a partnership with Hospitality Technology Next Generation (HTNG) and The OpenTravel Alliance, to advance distribution technology in the hospitality industry.

In early 2019, HTNG and OpenTravel launched a joint ‘Distribution Pillar’ as a community of interest to advance electronic distribution in the hospitality industry. While the missions of the three associations are different, they all share the goal of improving the traveler experience from the searching and booking process through to the conclusion of the trip.  

This extended partnership leverages the strength of HEDNA's business focus as a third organization in the Distribution Pillar. The Strategy Chair for the pillar is Tom Coulthurst of Oracle Hospitality. There were two existing Strategic Advisors for the Distribution Pillar, Lorie Grant of InterContinental Hotels Group (representing OpenTravel’s Board of Directors) and Brian Kirkland of Choice Hotels International (representing HTNG’s Board of Governors). HEDNA President Sarah Fults, VP Distribution for MGM Resorts International, has been appointed as the third advisor to serve with Grant and Kirkland.

“HTNG, OpenTravel and HEDNA have all played important roles in advancing distribution in the hospitality industry over the years,” HEDNA President Sarah Fults said. “Distribution is the inventory engine that powers hospitality so our involvement in the Distribution Pillar is a natural fit."

There are currently two workgroups under the Distribution Pillar, the Open Payments Alliance (OPA) Standards Workgroup and the Unique Global Identifier (UGI) Workgroup. HEDNA also has a Connectivity Workgroup which addresses the issue of attribute-based pricing and will benefit from the partnership and expertise of HTNG and OpenTravel members. HEDNA, HTNG and OpenTravel members are all able to participate in these workgroups along with others that may develop under the pillar.

“We’re excited to announce the inclusion of HEDNA in this joint pillar,” said HTNG COO David Sjolander. “The fact that we have a range of expertise from multiple associations coming together will really strengthen the output of the workgroups under the Distribution Pillar.”

“We are seeing changes in not only what defines a hospitality product, but also how those products are distributed,” said Lorie Grant, manager, 3rd party distribution – product management of InterContinental Hotels Group and OpenTravel board member. “It is a very exciting time to be part of the efforts and we look forward to continuing to provide business solutions driven by customers’ expectations and needs of suppliers to most effectively merchandise their products and services.”

In addition to uniting around distribution, HEDNA and HTNG will further their collaboration, including promoting each other’s events and partnering on other future activities.

For more information on the Distribution Pillar, please contact or




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 3 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



About Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA)


HEDNA (Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association) is a not-for-profit trade association whose worldwide membership includes executives and managers from the most influential companies in the hospitality industry. Founded in 1991, HEDNA’s mission is to be the leading global forum for advancing hospitality distribution through collaboration and knowledge sharing. Its vision calls for HEDNA to be known for creating an environment that fosters strategic collaboration toward business development in the global hospitality industry. HEDNA holds two global distribution conferences each year, trains hospitality professionals through its HEDNA University program and has several working groups that issue thought leadership on industry issues. For more, visit or follow us on YouTubeBlog, LinkedIn or Twitter for updates and additional content.


About OpenTravel Alliance

OpenTravel Alliance is passionate about solving the problems inherent with connecting multiple systems within the complex travel distribution arena. Our mission is to enable the future of travel by driving the evolving digital experience for consumers. OpenTravel Alliance creates, expands and drives adoption of open specifications, including but not limited to the use of XML and JSON, for the electronic exchange of business information among all sectors of the travel industry. Visit

OpenTravel Alliance is comprised of companies representing airlines, car rental firms, hotels, cruise lines, railways, leisure suppliers, service providers, tour operators, travel agencies, and solutions providers.