NH HOTEL GROUP BUSINESS MODEL
NH Hotel Group is a consolidated multinational operator and one of the leading urban hotels chains in the world. At the end of 2019, the Group was present in 30 countries, operating 368 hotels and 57,466 rooms in three continents (Europa, the Americas and Africa).
The centralized business model allows NH Hotel Group to offer its guests an excellent service in the various hotels in the different regions and geographical areas where it does business. The corporate head office and regional offices offer the hotels a wide range of functions such as sales, booking, marketing, human resources, financial management and systems development.
This is a very exciting time for the business, incorporating sustainability into the Company’s strategy and creating a business model that offers numerous value creation opportunities to all stakeholders.
BREAKDOWN OF THE PORTFOLIO
* Corporate scope. Figures as of December 31st, 2019.
Global economic and touristic context
During 2019 worldwide economic activity has maintained a growth rate of +2.9%, which is slightly below the growth for the previous year (+3.6%).
The European Union’s estimate for growth in worldwide economic activity in 2020 is +3%, slightly higher than growth in 2019. More specifically, in the Eurozone the estimated growth rate for 2019 was 1.1% (+1.2% in 2020). Global growth has led to a positive trade and investment cycle. Furthermore, European economies are continuing to grow, although at more moderate rates. In line with the above data, when the growth rates of the four countries that make up the bulk of the Group’s sales and results are compared, it can be seen that Spain (+1.9% in 2019 vs. +2.4% in 2018), The Netherlands (+1.7% 2019 vs. +2.6% 2018), Germany (+0.4% in 2019 vs. +1.5% in 2018) and Italy (+0.1% 2019 vs. +0.8% 2018) show lower growth rates than the previous year. On the other hand, growth in Latin America is expected to be +1.1% in 2020 (vs. -0.1% in 2019), as almost all the economies in the region have substantially downgraded their growth rates since spring, due to both cyclical and structural factors that have affected the growth that had been anticipated for these economies.
According to the World Tourism Organization (“UNWTO”), in 2019 international tourist arrivals globally reached 1.5 billion, representing an increase of + 4% over the previous year, well above the growth rate of 2.9% in the world economy. In 2019 international arrivals grew in all regions. However, the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, the collapse of Thomas Cook, geopolitical and social tensions and the slowdown in the global economy have made growth slower in 2019 compared to the exceptional rates seen in 2017 and 2018. This slowdown particularly affected advanced economies, especially the regions of Europe and Asia Pacific.
Europe, where growth was lower than in previous years (+4%), still leads the way in terms of the number of international arrivals, with 743 million international tourists last year (51% of the world market).In this context, Spain has consolidated its position as a world power in tourism together with France and the USA, managing to beat its own record with more than 83 million foreign tourists in 2019, a 1% increase in the number of international arrivals. South America (+2%) on the other hand showed mixed results, as although the Caribbean islands consolidated their recovery following the hurricanes of 2017, the number of arrivals to South America fell, due in part to social and political unrest.
Forecasts show that global growth will be maintained in 2020, although at a more sustainable rate after ten years of constant expansion, following the economic and financial crisis of 2009. For 2020, growth of between 3% and 4% is forecast, a prospect which is reflected in the latest UNWTO Confidence Index, which shows cautious optimism: 47% of participants believe that tourism will have better results than in 2019 and 43% believe that it will stay at the same level. It is expected that major sporting events, including the Tokyo Olympics, and other cultural events such as Expo 2020 in Dubai, will have a positive impact on the sector.
Meanwhile growth in GDP in Europe is expected to be +1.2% in 2020.
Evolution of results
With respect to the figure of income in the financial year 2019, it reached 1,708.1 million euros, showing a growth of +5.9% (+94.7 million euros). The Profit for the year attributable to the Parent reached €90,0 million compared with €101.6 million in 2018. This decrease is explained by the application of IFRS 16 since 1 January 2019, which reduces the profit for 2019 and the lower contribution from asset turnover compared to 2018.
With respect to the gross debt situation in this year, it increased from €418.9 million in December 2018 to €455.6 million in December 2019. With regard to the cash and cash equivalents situation, it amounted to €289.3 million at 31 December 2019 (€265.9 million at 31 December 2018). In addition, this liquidity is complemented by year-end credit lines amounting to €303.5 million, of which €250 million correspond to a long-term syndicated credit line, compared to €350.4 million at 31 December 2018..
Income or losses before taxes and the taxes paid per country described above are affected, in some cases, by circumstances such as the sale of assets, the exit of hotels, early depreciation of assets due to repositioning or a situation of hyperinflation, as is the case of Argentina. It should also be noted that the corporate income tax shown in the above table is as calculated on a settlement basis.
* Figures broken down in the Consolidated EINF 2018. It should be clarified that during the first quarter of 2019 a circumstance was detected in the Consolidated Financial Statements at 31 December 2018 in relation to the accounting application of hyperinflation in the Parent Company’s Argentine subsidiaries in accordance with IAS 29 (see note 2.2. to the 2019 Consolidated Financial Statements). The updated aggregate figure for income before tax for 2018 is 185,350 thousand euros, while the updated aggregate figure for income tax for 2018 is 61,561 thousand euros.
AGREEMENT WITH MINOR
The Board of Directors of NH Hotel Group approved the formalization of a framework agreement with Minor International to establish relations between the two Groups, as well as a reciprocal trademark license agreement in the geographical areas in which the other group operates.
CHANGES IN THE BOARD
The Board of Directors of NH Hotel Group resolved to appoint as new members, by co-optation, Beatriz Puente, Executive Managing Director of Finance & Administration of NH, with the category of Executive Director; and Kosin Chantikul, Senior Vice-President of Investment & Acquisitions of Minor Hotels, with the category of Proprietary Director.
The two new Directors filled the vacancies left following the resignation of the three directors: María Grecna, Paul Johnson and José María Sagardoy. With the new composition, the Board of Directors was made up of nine members: four proprietary directors, three independent directors and two executive directors. Following the changes, NH continues to comply with the premises of the Good Governance Code for listed companies, especially with the recommendation for a balanced composition, with an ample majority of non-executive directors and an adequate proportion between proprietary and independent directors.
ENTRY INTO THE LUXURY SEGMENT
Signing of the contract for the Villa Padierna Palace hotel, to be managed by NH Hotel Group under a variable lease agreement and converted to the Anantara brand.
PAYMENT OF DIVIDEND
Following the approval by the General Shareholders’ Meeting held on May 13th, 2019, a gross dividend of €0.15 per share was paid out (approx. €59 million).
NH Hotel Group formalizes the integration into its operation of 13 hotels in Portugal, three through a long-term sustainable rental contract and the rest of the portfolio are operated under a management contract with Minor International. The transfer of the operations of these hotels from the Tivoli portfolio to NH Hotel Group demonstrates the alignment of interests and represents the first milestone in the integration of the two companies.
WHITH THE MOTTO
“TOGETHER WITH LOVE”,
NH Hotel Group held a worldwide corporate volunteering week for the first time. This global initiative is focused on sustainability and the strengthening of relations with local communities where the Group is present. All of the Company’s teams were invited to participate and for one week, close to one thousand employees took part as volunteers in a number of initiatives chosen and lead by themselves.
In this way, NH Hotel Group joined the annual volunteering initiative implemented by Minor International, with which it shares a firm commitment to the development of its Corporate Social Responsibility strategy
NH Hotel Group has been assessed for the first time by the sustainable investment agency SAM, placing the Company in fourth position among all the companies assessed to make up the 2019 index. NH Hotel Group has thus consolidated its position as one of the world leaders in terms of sustainability in the industry.
Each year SAM assesses businesses that develop the best corporate practice in relation to sustainability, focusing on three dimensions: economic, social and environmental. These areas in turn are divided into 20 criteria, and NH Hotel Group has obtained the top score (100th percentile) in two of them: Tax Strategy and Environmental Reporting. It has also achieved great recognition in all criteria related to people management, such as talent attraction and retention, human capital development or working practice indicators.
Establishment of 20% carbon emission reduction targets by 2030
The Company was the first Spanish hotel chain to establish emission reduction targets scientifically validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).
In this quest, the Group has committed to reducing its carbon emissions throughout its entire value chain by 20% by 2030. The establishment of this target sets out NH Hotel Group’s road map towards a significant reduction in the carbon footprint of its activity in the coming years, aligned with the goal established in the Paris Agreement to limit the increase in global temperature to less than 2ºC, and join worldwide efforts towards the transition to a low-carbon economy.
A new service providing unlimited enjoyment of the city. With the tagline “Stay in one hotel, enjoy them all”, NH Hotel Group presented City Connection, a selection of services that allows guests to enjoy them at any NH Hotels,
NH Collection, nhow, Tivoli or Avani hotel in the city where they are staying, regardless of the hotel they are staying in and for the duration of their stay.
STRENGTHENING OF THE LUXURY SEGMENT
NH Hotel Group consolidates its strategic commitment to the luxury segment through an agreement to operate eight high-end hotels, notable properties that come from the Boscolo portfolio; located in privileged locations in Rome, Florence, Venice, Nice, Prague and Budapest.
OUR VISION AND CULTURE
One day, whenever anyone contemplates a trip to a city for an overnight stay of a meeting, for business or pleasure, they will always ask themselves: “is there an NH Hotel at my destination?”.
NH Hotel Group focuses on customers; they are at the centre of all decisions. This approach allows it to evolve towards a vision focused on the service culture, taking care of the details at all times and corporate values that foster sustainability, innovation and responsibility, based on people.
NH Hotel Group wants to be consumers’ chosen destination, offering them memorable experiences that exceed their expectations and making them feel special. This vision, which is shared by all the people who are part of the Company, serves as a performance and commitment guide, while at the same time seeking to make NH Hotel Group the best option for investors and owners who wish to grow together with the Group, with a global and flexible proposal, with highly-motivated and proud teams, efficient management tools and unique solutions.
To maximize the return for shareholders who have placed their trust in NH Hotel Group, the Company offers its investors the best management opportunities as a leading operator in both the urban and business segment.
The NH Hotel Group culture, inspired on its vision and on a clear commitment to customer service, is what has set the Company apart since it started operating in the industry.
The alignment of the Company’s culture with its strategy is key for sustainable growth. This culture has allowed NH to evolve from a management model to a leadership model that incorporates the principles that guide the day-to-day activities of its employees, and which can be summarized in eight beliefs:
- We are obsessed with delivering memorable experiences
- We strive to be the best, even if we are not the biggest/strong>
- We are responsible for our results
- We care for our people, our people care for our guests
- We are active in the communities where we live
- We are young-minded
- We enjoy what we do … and we do everything with a smile
NH Hotel Group, a family rather than a workplace
Salvador Férez, or Salva as he is known at the NH Campo de Cartagena hotel where he works, was one of the hundreds of people affected by floods in the region of Murcia (Spain) in 2019. He and his family live in Los Alcázares, one of the towns that was most seriously affected.
After losing his house, and until a temporary home was assigned to him, he and his family found a new home at this workplace, NH Campo de Cartagena.
The Férez family stayed at the hotel for 10 days, during which the entire team rallied around to do whatever they could to help. As the Hotel’s General Manager said, this experience really brought all the employees together.
Salvador’s daughter Paula decided to thank the whole team at the hotel for their hospitality with this great drawing.
Moony, back home thanks to the team at NH Orio Al Serio
In April we received the following tweet: Ciao! On March 29th we stayed at the NH Orio Al Serio and our son left his blue and white Manchester City teddy in the bed of room 311. We hope your team has found it! He has had it for 7 years and it is very special to him. Thank you for any help you can give us in finding for it!
The whole team of the NH Orio al Serio hotel immediately set to work looking for Moony and finally found it. The hotel staff created a story and published this photo of Moony in the bed, saying that he was fine and was resting ahead of his journey back home. The journey took place, of course, and ended with James, the toy’s owner, hugging Moony once again.
Santa’s Room – NH Collection Abascal
Last December, a very special guest stayed at the NH Collection Abascal hotel in Madrid. It was none other than Santa Claus himself! For a few weeks all guests, adults and children alike, could visit this room that the hotel team had prepared with great love. Visitors could find the clothes that Santa Claus left behind when he had had to rush out the window, a fireplace, a snowman made with coffee capsules, cardboard reindeer and personalized letters from everyone who visited the room. Without question, a great idea providing magic and joy to both employees and guests at this special time of year.
Music On, World off at nhow Berlin
A guest staying at the nhow Berlin explained on arrival that he was a lover of music, art, architecture and culture, which are precisely the features that define the hotel. Accordingly, the team at the nhow Berlin did not hesitate to make his dream come true and allowed him to practice his DJ skills at the hotel bar. This was not the first time he had stayed at the hotel: he had spent his birthday there and, on that occasion, the hotel staff prepared a delicious dessert for him. He loved it and told us so on social media, where he also praised the kindness and professionalism of all the employees. He has decided to return in a few months, and we hope it will not be the last time.
NH HOTEL GROUP STRATEGY
The Company’s excellent performance in recent years has been the result of a complete transformation of the Group.
In the first phase of this transformation, which began in 2014, the strategic plan focused on brand segmentation, portfolio optimization, strong investments in repositioning and systems and the pricing strategy. This brought NH Hotel Group to a second phase, which started in 2017, based on the Company’s strengths and boosting the key levers in value creation for the business. The priorities set out by this Plan were to boost the Company’s revenues, increase its efficiency while taking advantage of its strengths for new repositioning opportunities and organic expansion as an additional route to growth.
With the entrance of Minor International as shareholder, a new phase full of opportunities has opened up, mainly thanks to now being a global hotel platform with presence in five continents.
It should be noted that, in February 2019, the Board of Directors of NH Hotel Group approved a framework governance agreement to establish relations between the two Groups, as well as a reciprocal trademark license agreement through which each group permits the use of its commercial brands in the geographical areas where the other group operates. These geographical areas have been defined as preferential and define the scope of action of each Group.
Thus, the framework agreement establishes mechanisms to prevent and resolve conflicts of interests, related-party operations and the exchange of information.
In this way, a new era has begun, in which new opportunities arise such as:
• The possibility of increasing the customer base.
• The possibility of improving pricing arrangements with commercial partners, such as travel agencies and suppliers, through economies of scale.
• The capacity to use a broader umbrella brand in new geographies.
• Access to the luxury segment through rebranding opportunities and opening and formalization of contracts for new hotels in this segment.
All this through opportunities driven by the exchange of talent within our businesses.
Furthermore, work has also been done this year on defining the new Strategic Plan 2020-2024, subject to approval by the Company’s Board of Directors to commence implementation from 2020 onwards.
Key strategic initiatives in 2019
INTEGRATION WITH MINOR HOTELS
Following the acquisition of 94.1% of the share capital of NH Hotel Group by Minor International in the last quarter of 2018, both Companies started in 2019 to explore joint value creation opportunities for the coming years.
The first initiative involved the integration of all their hotel brands under the same corporate umbrella with presence in more than 50 countries around the world. In this way, a portfolio of more than 500 hotels is organized under eight brands: NH Hotels, NH Collection, nhow, Tivoli, Anantara, Avani, Elewana and Oaks, comprising a wide and diverse spectrum of hotel options connected to the needs and wishes of present-day global travellers.
The complementary nature of the two hotel portfolios and the benchmark position of their different brands will allow NH Hotel Group to grow and compete with better guarantees of success and to create added value to its customer base around the world.
The teams of both groups have worked together on different lines of action throughout the year. Taking advantage of the broad umbrella of brands of the two Companies, an analysis was carried out on a hotel-by-hotel basis of the potential repositioning to the most premium brands of certain assets located in Europe with the capacity to boost their profitability under different brands to those they operate under at present. Furthermore, the two Companies have made progress in the development of initiatives to take advantage of economies of scale with commercial channels and suppliers.
At the same time, both groups worked on instrumentalizing the use and operating arrangements for the brands of the two Companies in markets other than their natural markets, which will speed up their expansion throughout the world.
On February 7th, 2019, the Board of Directors of NH Hotel Group approved the formalization of a framework agreement with Minor International, with the aim of establishing a transparent framework for relations between the two groups in line with best corporate governance practices.
In particular, the agreement established communication and information exchange between NH Hotel Group and Minor International; the definition of the preferential respective geographical areas and market segments for the two Companies, with a view to avoiding overlaps and promoting business opportunities; the establishment of a protocol for the approval of their mutual business operations and of operations with related parties; and the creation of a framework to prevent possible conflicts of interests between the two parties.
In June 2019 NH Hotel Group formalized an agreement with Minor International to operate 13 hotels in Tivoli’s portfolio in Portugal, consolidating an offer positioned in the high-end segment.
On January 6th, 2020, NH Hotel Group consolidated its strategic commitment to the luxury segment through an agreement to operate eight notable properties of the Boscolo portfolio. The Company has strengthened its relationship with Covivio, one of the leading European real estate investors, to operate these eight high-end hotels, situated in privileged locations in Rome, Florence, Venice, Nice, Prague and Budapest with the incorporation of more than 1,000 rooms. Most of the hotels will be relaunched under the Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas and NH Collection brands, after carrying out an in-depth repositioning programme in all properties, driven by Covivio throughout 2020.
WE EXPAND OUR BRANDS
The complementary nature of the portfolios of Minor and
NH Hotel Group, as well as the benchmark position of their different brands, allows NH Hotel Group to grow and compete with greater guarantees of success and create added value for its customer base throughout the world. Both groups are aligned in order to be able to capitalize the best opportunities for the expansion of their brands in their different preferential territories.
With the entry of Minor as a shareholder, a new era has commenced with value creation opportunities through a global hotel platform with presence in five continents, which lets more customers be reached with a broader umbrella brand and new locations.
Debut of the Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas luxury brand in Spain and Ireland
In 2019, as part of the integration of brands under a single umbrella, an agreement was signed through which NH Hotel Group would start to manage the Villa Padierna Palace hotel under a variable lease agreement. The property was rebranded as an Anantara hotel under the supervision of Minor Hotels, becoming thus the first milestone in the materialization of this joint strategy combining the leadership and experiences of both Companies.
Located in the Valle del Golf of the Costa del Sol, the property was relaunched under the name Anantara Villa Padierna Palace Benahavís Marbella Resort, becoming the first Anantara in Spain and the second in Europe (after the Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort in Portugal, launched two years ago).
Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas will also have its debut in the forthcoming months in Ireland with the rebranding of the “The Marker” hotel in Dublin, in one of the most contemporary buildings in the city. This incorporation will become the first city hotel of the Anantara brand in Europe and will represent the arrival of this luxurious brand to the North-West of the continent. This new Anantara, which from now on will be operated by NH Hotel Group, is another result of the joint strategy with Minor Hotels, the owner of this brand.
Furthermore, in December 2019 Minor Hotels announced the signing of a deal for a new property that will operate under the NH Collection brand in Qatar. The NH Collection hotel in Doha will be the first of the brand in the Middle East and the first outside this brand’s natural markets, Europe and South America, and will be operated by Minor Hotels.
Integration of the Minor hotels in Portugal into the operations of NH Hotel Group
Integration of the Minor hotels in Portugal into the operations of NH Hotel Group
In January 2019, it was agreed that Minor’s hotels in Portugal would be managed by NH Hotel Group. Following the operation, the combined portfolio of Minor International and NH Hotel Group in Portugal totalled 17 hotels* in operation with 4 or 5 stars, making it the leader in the sector in the country as the main operator, and consolidating an extensive offer positioned in the high-end segment, operated under the Tivoli and Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas brands in Portugal, located in Vilamoura, Carvoeiro, Sintra, Coimbra, Lagos and Portimão.
**This figure includes the Tivoli Évora Ecoresort hotel which is operated under a franchise agreement.
Increasing the portfolio of NH COLLECTION and NHOW
In 2019 the Company has continued to invest in the repositioning and improvement of its portfolio in each of the Business Units.
In Southern Europe, the opening of the NH Collection Fori Imperiali, in Rome, is noteworthy, consolidating the great growth of the NH Collection brand in Italy, where the Company has opened 12 hotels in the last 4 years under this brand. With the opening of this hotel, NH Hotel Group has reinforced its positioning in the upper-upscale segment in the city of Rome.
Furthermore, the NH Collection Valencia Colón has also been opened, the first of this brand in the city.
In the Northern Europe Business Unit, attention should be drawn to the NH Carlton Amsterdam which, after a six-month-long extensive refurbishment process, closes a chapter of its history and reopens its doors under the name of NH Collection Amsterdam Flower Market. Two other properties have been inaugurated in The Netherlands: the NH Collection München Bavaria – the eighth premium brand property in Germany – and the NH Collection Antwerp Centre, the Group’s first hotel in this city and the third NH Collection hotel in Belgium.
The Company maintains its interest in increasing its presence under the nhow brand in the coming years. At the end of 2019, this avant-garde brand operated four hotels located in Berlin, Milan, Marseille and Rotterdam, and had six projects in its portfolio, in Europe and Latin America, slated to open between 2020 and 2022. Of the latter the nhow London and the nhow Amsterdam RAI, will open in January 2020. The first, located in the Shoreditch district of London, is part of an architectonic complex designed by the prestigious architecture studio of Sir Norman Foster. In the interior design, the Company combines traditional British icons and unconventional contemporary elements, with the hope of making the hotel a benchmark for creativity and dynamism in the city. In turn, the opening of nhow Amsterdam RAI represents the arrival in the Dutch city of the largest newly built hotel in Benelux. Its 650 rooms are located inside unique 25-floor building made up of three superimposed triangular prisms that symbolize the diversity that characterizes the past, present and future of the city of Amsterdam, in which the interior design has sought to reflect the multicultural spirit of the Dutch city.
EXPANSION AND PORTFOLIO OPTIMIZATION PLAN
In 2019 the Group has continued with the significant improvement in the quality of the assets and destinations to be added to the portfolio, with the opening of 26 new hotels and 4,038 rooms during the year. These new hotels include, among others, the Anantara Villa Padierna Palace (Marbella, Spain), NH Collection Roma Fori Imperiali (Rome, Italy), The Marker (Dublin, Ireland), Anantara Vilamoura Algarve Resort (Portugal) and NH Collection Antwerp Centre (Antwerp, Belgium).
In 2020 the Company will continue its expansion plan with the opening of 14 new hotels, of a total of 34 projects in the pipeline in Europe and Latin America until 2023, and further commits to the luxury brand. Specifically, of the 34 hotels planned for the three-year period, 70% of rooms are in the high-end range.
EVOLUTION OF OPENINGS AND INCORPORATIONS
Number of rooms
In number of rooms and hotels between 1996 and 2019
Compound average annual growth: 9,6 %
In 2019 the Group has started to operate 26 new hotels, located in nine countries with a total of 4,038 rooms.
NH Hotel Group signed agreements for 34 hotels in 2019 with 4,829 rooms. All the agreements were under lease and management arrangements.
COMERCIAL EVOLUTION MODEL: BOOSTING BUSINESS
The new commercial strategy, based on the Customer Centric approach, is built on experience, specialization and the close relationship that has been generated with customers over the years, to offer a service of the highest quality. Through it, the Company will manage to improve the capacity to evaluate the actual opportunity cost at each time, impacting the Company’s global strategy and the acceleration of its growth.
Since 2018, projects have been led to boost the Company’s commercial optimization and development through the digitalization of processes and new business approaches such as the acquisition and loyalty of customers, which have represented an important new demand channel. In line with this, NH Hotel Group continues with its digital transformation project in the B2B area, with the aim of improving profitability and generating additional demand.
Boosting Business is an opportunity to accelerate the Company’s business capacity which will guide the evolution for adaptation towards both future and present customers. It is focused on creating new digital tools, boosting growth and strengthening the connection with customers. Adapting the service to the digital era to create new processes, ways of working and identifying development opportunities, will make it possible to improve efficiency and offer a much more personalized and quality experience in line with the new needs of customers.
“For NH Hotel Group, being in the right place at the right time is key”
The creation of an optimal model that will allow the development of transversal action plans, adapted to each market, drives the growth of NH Hotel Group in both new (thanks to Minor Hotel Group commercial synergies) and traditional markets, increasing demand and reducing seasonality.
Thus, the cohesion between the service culture that characterizes NH Hotel Group and the step towards digitalization, increases the capacity to identify new opportunities and drives growth as professionals, as leaders and as an organization.
NH Hotel Group continues to be at the head of innovation and 2019 has ended up being a very important year in the Company’s Digital Transformation Project, one of the most important initiatives of the Strategic Plan. This project aims to bring efficiency to processes and systems, increase the capacity of differentiation compared to competitors and continue improving the Company’s basic processes.
Thus, one of the Company’s great achievements has been to centralize all its properties and functions in a single integrated system. This allows NH Hotel Group to have a 100% integrated digital platform: NH Digital Core Platform.
A pioneering technological solution in the sector that has made it possible to integrate the systems of all the Group’s hotels and which has become the foundation on which NH Hotel Group can extend its knowledge of customers, maximize its efficiency and innovate on a large scale in all its areas of value.
Among the main benefits, attention should be drawn to the improvement in the customer experience in a global setting such as the present, the optimization and reduction in operating costs, the in-depth analysis of data – which has allowed the Company to generate new sources of revenues –, greater agility in responding to market changes and, especially, the important boost given to the innovation culture within the organization.
At NH Hotel Group we consider digitalization to be a key tool in order to offer an extraordinary experience, but always as an accompaniment to the work of our employees who, proud to serve, are those who really make a difference. They are the soul of NH Hotel Group and digitalization is a facilitator; and the fact that they go hand in hand is what guarantees the success of our business model.
Significant projects in 2019
Financial and Operational Dashboards
An operating project for General Managers and Regional Managers, aimed at achieving an easier, faster and more relevant report generation process, that has been carried out thanks to the great performance of a multidisciplinary team. It guarantees the visibility of the key KPIs and the Company’s status immediately, permitting a rapid and efficient analysis of the data in order to make reliable decisions. The reports are sent by email, allowing for much more efficient and rapid management.
This project, developed at the NH Hotel Group Central Reservations Office, uses Artificial Intelligence and the interpretation of customers’ natural language to handle efficiently the emails received for the management of reservations and quotes.
Each agent immediately receives the precise information, distributed according to language and customer type, to permit individualized and more correct handling of each booking.
NH Hotel Group has created an application for Housekeeping that optimizes the check-in process. As soon as a room is clean and ready, the hotel’s housekeeping staff can confirm this in real time using the app. This represents an optimization of the check-in process, as the guest has access to the room earlier, and an improvement in guest perception.
In 2019, the housekeeping teams of NH Schiphol, NH Collection Paseo del Prado, NH Nacional and NH Podium started to work with this app, and they all agree: it makes their work much easier!
NH Hotel Group applies robotic technology in different areas of the Company, to automate processes with low added value (reservation management and validations, quotes, etc.), enabling it to improve productivity and response times to our customers.
This technology is also being applied to optimize basic processes in reception, automating repetitive tasks so that more time can be dedicated to guests and improving their experience.
Digitalization of processes is a priority for NH Hotel Group. In 2019 a digitalization project has been implemented for guest registrations forms that simplifies the process. Instead of three documents (Welcome Card, signed registration Form and NH Rewards leaflet), there is now just one registration document that complies with the legal requisites of all countries and presents a new and attractive design that can be personalized for each brand.
This is a simple way to speed up and automate the registration process, so that employees can offer better attention and experiences to our guests.