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Worldhotels Selects New CEO

Geoff Andrew to Lead Worldhotels

FRANKFURT, DE. January 11, 2017 – Worldhotels, a leading worldwide group of independent hotels, has selected Geoff Andrew as the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer. Andrew succeeds Dirk Fuehrer who is stepping down for personal reasons.

Andrew has been involved in travel and hospitality for nearly 30 years and has acquired a wealth of international sales, marketing and distribution experience. He has been employed by Worldhotels as Chief Operating Officer since 2014. Prior to joining Worldhotels, Andrew spent seven years as the managing director of Worldhotels’ former sister company, Nexus, following senior management roles at both Corinthia Hotels International and Summit Hotels and Resorts.

Dirk Fuehrer will continue to serve Worldhotels in an external advisory capacity and will substantially expedite the company’s development in Central and Eastern Europe.

Speaking of his successor, Fuehrer added, “I can think of no one better to lead Worldhotels. Geoff’s experience as COO, combined with his strong background in the hotel industry, make him the perfect choice to lead the group.”

“We're delighted that Geoff accepted the position as he has successfully led and executed many of our strategic initiatives over the past two years,” said Steve Rowley, Chairman of World Hotels AG. “While we respect and regret Dirk’s decision to leave, we are very pleased that he has agreed to remain involved in the business.”

“I am honored and excited about the opportunity to lead Worldhotels into the next phase of our strategic development,” said Andrew. “Our purpose is to empower true independence. I will do my best to serve the group and our hoteliers in this highly competitive market.”

About Worldhotels:

• Worldhotels is a global brand that brings together some of the world's most unique independent hotels. With reach into over 60 countries and six continents, the group targets savvy business and leisure travelers that seek an authentic and local experience when choosing a hotel.

• With over 45 years of excellence in the industry, the company's mission is to provide access to upscale hotels of character and distinction. Each hotel in the Worldhotels portfolio has been carefully selected to ensure it meets the group’s strict quality standards. Each hotel is measured against over 600 quality criteria every year.

• Worldhotels backs independent hotels with the power of a global brand while allowing them to retain their individual character and identity. The group offers an “affiliation model” which provides a comprehensive range of services that includes global marketing, sales, training, e-commerce and state-of-the-art distribution and technology.

• Guests can also earn points with the group’s own loyalty program, Worldhotels Peakpoints (worldhotels-peakpoints.com), and redeem them for hotel vouchers. Alternatively, they can collect miles for eligible stays thanks to an extensive list of 23 frequent flyer programs of the world's premier international carriers. Air France, Cathay Pacific, Lufthansa, United Airlines are just some of the partners that make earning miles with Worldhotels easy.

For reservations or information, visit worldhotels.com. Images are available from sneubauer@worldhotels.com.

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Coming Up In The February Online Hotel Business Review




Feature Focus
Social Media: Interacting with the Hotel Customer
Consider these astonishing numbers: 1.49 billion active monthly Facebook users. 1.1 billion active monthly YouTube users. 320 million active monthly Twitter users and nearly 400 million registered users on LinkedIn. 400 million active monthly Instagram users and 200 million active Google+ users. The power and reach of social media is an awesome force and it has transformed how hotels interact with their customers. In the past year, social media advertising spending increased 33.5% to nearly $24 billion dollars. Social networks are being utilized by hotels to reach more visitors, expand brand awareness, enhance brand reputation and to establish more direct and personal communication with their customers. Savvy hotel operators are adopting a comprehensive social media strategy, and there are several emerging trends to note. Video continues to be a powerful and influential element in social media marketing, with 70% of companies saying that it is their most effective marketing tool. Video generates a 62% higher engagement rate than photographs alone, and with new social sites like Meerkat and Periscope which offer live video streaming, those numbers will only increase. Sponsored content is another growing trend. Though advertorials have been around for decades, hotels are finding new ways to maximize the visibility of their content. Some are placing sponsored content on Facebook, or on influencer blogs. Another trend is the integration of a “Buy Now” button into social media websites. Customers will be able to make purchases without ever having to leave their favorite social sites. This development is a major convenience for customers and should also be an additional revenue source for hotels. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.