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Press Releases: Press Releases

HT-NEXT Keynote Sessions to Feature Speakers from Harley-Davidson, Disney and Marriott

Tuesday, March 3, 2020  
Posted by: Emily Wilson

CHICAGO (March 3, 2020) - Three compelling keynote speakers will present to more than 500 hospitality technology professionals at the upcoming HT-NEXT event, being held on 27-30 April in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Harley-Davidson Motor Company's former director of communications, Ken Schmidt, will present '"Rev Up Hospitality: How to Dominate a Marketplace by Putting Your Brand's Relationship First."

When experience is a commodity, brands cannot rely on marketing alone to create lasting customer relationships. In this revved-up keynote, Schmidt crystalizes how the basic drivers of human nature need to be tattooed on the minds of everyone representing and responsible for creating a brand. As competition heats up, creating emotional resonance is a strategic business driver that will make sure brands stay relevant in an increasingly disloyal culture with more options than ever. Find out what worked for Harley-Davidson and apply the biker mentality to your own brands to create rabid fans - with or without the leather.

Tilak Mandadi, executive vice president, digital and chief technology officer of Disney Parks, Experiences and Products, will present the session "Delivering the Unexpected: How Disney Parks Define True End-to-End Experiences."

When it comes to creating magic and memories, Disney has defined the game. In this keynote session, hear from Mandadi on how digital and physical are converging to transform the guest experience. He will share how he and his team leverage e-commerce, data science, AI/machine learning, cloud and information security, and more to define and deliver relentless innovations and strategic solutions in guest and consumer experiences and products, cast and crew experiences, all while increasing productivity and strategic business growth.

Adam Malamut, chief customer experience officer of Marriott International will present "Understanding and Beating the Disruptors."

It's an era of customer-centric innovation and the largest hotel brand in the world recognizes this and is upping the standards for all other brands. Malamut shares his unique perspective, with his background in experiential psychology, on how digital is changing service and is essential for survival in an economy that is powered on data and platforms.

Additionally, HT-NEXT will tackle unruly privacy legislation, unpack the ultimate guest room of the future, and help hotels navigate the pressure presented by global travel tech trends. With guest data as the new currency and personalization as the payoff, the stakes for surprise-and-delight have been raised, and HT-NEXT 2020 will help hospitality companies rise to the occasion.

For registration, the full agenda, sponsorship opportunities and more visit:




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 23 top IT leaders from hospitality companies around the world, itself has technology responsible for over 3.1 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 Hospitality Technology (HT)


Hospitality Technology is the only publication dedicated to covering the role of information technology in improving business performance for both hotel and restaurant operators. The Hospitality Technology editorial portfolio includes: a print publication that publishes eight times annually and reaches more than 16,000 hospitality industry executives, three networking and educational events (MURTEC, HT-NEXT and MURTEC Executive Summit), a comprehensive website, e-newsletters, web seminars, and several exclusive annual reports and studies.


Hospitality Technology is the parent brand of the Restaurant Technology Network, a membership community of restaurants and suppliers working together to solve industry challenges by shaping standards and sharing best practices. Visit Hospitality Technology online at Hospitality Technology is published by EnsembleIQ, headquartered in Chicago.



About EnsembleIQ


EnsembleIQ is a premier business intelligence resource that exists to help people and their organizations succeed. It is structured to serve the business-to-business needs of retailers, consumer goods manufacturers, technology providers, hospitality and healthcare professionals, marketing agencies and retail service providers by using its integrated network of media and information resources designed to inform, connect and provide actionable marketplace intelligence. Information on EnsembleIQ can be found at


EnsembleIQ is a portfolio company of RFE Investment Partners, a private equity investor with more than 30 years of experience investing in growth companies in partnership with strong management teams. Information of RFE can be found at