The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has officially selected UAE based, award-winning travel-tech start-up, Hotel Data Cloud (HDC) as a “Healing Solutions for Tourism”. Beating out over 1,000 contestants, from over 100 countries, HDC has been recognized as the most disruptive startup in the Middle East, that is offering solutions to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on tourism.
Tourism has been the worst affected of all major economic sectors due to COVID-19, with an estimated loss of 60 to 80% of international tourist arrivals, equaling 850 million to 1.1 billion fewer tourists. In order to restore traveler trust and confidence to reinvigorate the tourism industry, HDC has initiated a COVID-19 preparedness program that spans over ninety attributes. Hotels can now reengage travelers by communicating their updated safety standards, hygiene protocols, social distancing measures, and much more to potential travelers, booking websites, and travel agent databases, in real-time.
“Tourism is a leading driver of economic growth and re-establishing trust by being open and transparent with travelers is a critical factor in restarting tourism globally. It is encouraging to see HDC stepping up to that challenge and offering a solution that will enable hotels to rebuild customer confidence and trust by being able to share vital attributes that affect travel decision making,” said Natalia Bayona, Senior Expert on Innovation and Digital Transformation, UNWTO.
A centralized global database for descriptive hotel content that disseminates to hundreds of booking partners, HDC’s new attributes include all the COVID-19 factors that travelers are taking into consideration, before making a booking decision. Hotels can now easily communicate their health and safety measures by creating a profile on HDC and filling in the COVID-19 preparedness section – which will then be automatically shared and freely accessible by any travel company, tourism board, government agency, and other institutions via the HDC data feed.
“We are proud and humbled to be recognized for our efforts towards rebuilding the tourism sector. With our technology, hotels can now efficiently share critical information, so that travelers can be reassured of their safety and confidently book their next stay,” said Kevin Czok, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of HDC.
HDC was founded in 2016, by Gregor Amon and Kevin Czok and currently has a portfolio of over 11,400 hotels in 153 countries. HDC closed its first round of seed funding having secured US$350,000 and is raising its second round of funding to meet increased demand, interest, and accelerate growth.
Check out MAGNiTT's interview with Hotel Data Cloud when we caught up with them in April after raising their $350K Seed round, to discuss their company, the travel industry, and future plans.
The Lebanese startup ecosystem saw an increase of 18% in startup deals between 2018 and 2019, with 45 deals taking place. While the number of investments has gone up, the majority of these involve Early-Stage companies. Discover more details in our 2019 Lebanon Venture Investment Report.