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July 30, 2015

The Rumour Mill Keeps Turning – Will Starwood Go Intercontinental?

Wouter GeertsAnalyst Insight by Wouter Geerts - Travel Analyst, Lodging

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Starwood Hotels and Resorts’s future is still uncertain, and while possible acquisition suitors have come and gone, the industry still believes that eventually some M&A developments will happen. In May I discussed what a takeover by Wyndham Worldwide would look like, but concluded that neither company would gain strategically in terms of geographical coverage from a takeover.

Some new developments have now put a possible merger between Starwood and Intercontinental Hotels Group on the cards. Intercontinental recently sold its Hong Kong flagship to a consortium for £604 million, rumoured to be an effort to bring in the cash needed for a merger. This briefing discusses how this scenario differs from the Wyndham case, and highlights again that the global hotel chains might be better off considering their options with local players.    

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July 28, 2015

Euromonitor International voted #1 British company for work/life balance

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According to the 2015 UK survey from career community website, Glassdoor, Euromonitor International ranked #1 across the UK for work-life balance based on reviews from current and former employees.

“We recognise our employees are our greatest assets,” said Lena Patel, HR Manager at Euromonitor International. “Our recently modernised London offices provide an environment that encourages breaks and ensures our employees have time to balance work because of our office opening times and enhanced holiday scheme, we are thrilled to be voted top British company for work-life balance.”

Diarmuid Russell, Glassdoor senior vice president and general manager, said: “What comes through clearly in the Glassdoor reviews for the employers on this list is that people feel empowered through technology and working practices to integrate work into their lives in a way that helps them be the best that they can be, both in the office and at home. Employees are increasingly looking to work for companies that genuinely offer a good work-life balance and it is clear that employers who understand this generate much higher loyalty and hold on to people for longer.”

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July 21, 2015

Apple Pay Enters the UK

This week, Apple Pay entered the UK after initial roll-out in the US. Though Apple holds a smaller share of the smartphone market in the UK than in the US, the UK's contactless network is more established. With this payments behavior laying the groundwork, Apple Pay will face lower barriers to adoption. Watch the video for complete insights.

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July 20, 2015

Takeaways from Soft Drink Company’s Earnings Reports

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PepsiCo recently released its earnings report, showing a massive strength in its snack food brands but a difficult second quarter performance for its beverages brands. Coca-Cola, on the other hand, will release its earnings report this week and does not have a snack foods brand to fall back on if weak performance arises. However, Coke has both a stronger market share and bigger business for its beverages brands.

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Jet.com Launches to Compete with Amazon.com

Analyst Insight by Michelle Chae - Retailing Analyst

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Marc Lore, the founder of Quidsi and former Amazon employee, is finally launching his next venture, Jet.com on Tuesday July 21st, after raising US$220 million. Will Jet.com be the next game-changer that can take on Amazon?

Through a dynamic pricing model, Jet.com promises average savings of 10-15% compared to anywhere else online at half of Amazon Prime’s membership fee. Starting on Tuesday, consumers can sign up for a membership at $49.99 per year with a free 90-day trial period. Jet.com plans to make its revenue strictly from membership fees and pass along all savings to consumers.

“'The bottom line is, we’re basically not making a dime on any of the transactions. We’re passing it all back to the consumer,’ Lore says from a conference room in his Montclair headquarters. ‘We want to build a different type of relationship with the consumer. When we show you a product, it’s not because we are making money on it and not because we are closing out a line. It’s because we think it’s a good deal.’” –BloombergBusiness

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July 15, 2015

Grexit or Not: The Future of the Greek Travel Industry, In or Out of the Eurozone

Wouter GeertsAnalyst Insight by Wouter Geerts - Travel Analyst

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Greece’s future in the Eurozone is on a knife-edge. Recent developments seem to secure Greece’s position in the Eurozone, but the future remains extremely uncertain. This uncertainty, combined with other volatility like the tragic events in Tunisia, greatly impacts the travel industry. According to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), the wider tourism industry in Greece accounted for 17.3% of GDP in 2014, meaning that any impact on the tourism industry will have a significant impact on the wider economy of Greece.  

Here, I will discuss two scenarios for the short to mid-term future of tourism in Greece, taking into account the correlation between GDP and arrivals performance, and the benefits of the “should I stay or should I go now” options. Future scenarios of the Greek economic outlook by Euromonitor International’s Economies team provides a useful framework to assess the different possible outcomes for tourism demand.  

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July 14, 2015

Iran’s Dairy Market a Temporary Solution to Russia’s Lockdown and China’s Slowdown

Lianne van den BosAnalyst Insight by Lianne van den Bos - Food Analyst

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A number of sanctions against Iran could be suspended by the US and the EU after international inspectors confirmed the country has curbed its nuclear programme. This breakthrough could open up the tenth largest growing dairy market globally, which is expected to hit new (real) sales worth over US$1 billion over 2015-2020, the size of the entire Western European region combined. With Russia’s lockdown and China’s slowdown could Iran be a temporary fix? Iran’s large, young population, which has an open attitude towards new packaged food products, makes it a huge untapped opportunity, one of the few remaining markets to target after Myanmar opened up after political change in 2011. However, if sanctions are lifted this is likely to be a lengthy process and political instability is a key concern when doing business in Iran, making it a less attractive market for foreign investment.

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July 8, 2015

Brand Scandals and how they Impact Consumers - Featuring Subway

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How do scandals like the investigation into Subway spokesman Jared Fogle impact the brands associated with these public figures.  How much do consumers care about the image of the companies they patronize? This podcast examines how foodservice brands have addressed and recovered from scandals in the past and the outlook for Subway now.

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July 7, 2015

The Most Likely Scenario for Greece

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With Greece voting “no” on July 5th, Greece now defaults on all of its debt. Although the Greek government states that the vote strengthens its position to bargain with the rest of the Eurozone, the Germans are unlikely to make further concessions. In order to keep funding their government, Greece may have to reintroduce the Drachma or some form of I.O.U.’s.

Continue reading "The Most Likely Scenario for Greece" »

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Recent Posts

The Rumour Mill Keeps Turning – Will Starwood Go Intercontinental?

Euromonitor International voted #1 British company for work/life balance

Apple Pay Enters the UK

Takeaways from Soft Drink Company’s Earnings Reports

Introducing Passport Institutional Channels

Jet.com Launches to Compete with Amazon.com

Grexit or Not: The Future of the Greek Travel Industry, In or Out of the Eurozone

Iran’s Dairy Market a Temporary Solution to Russia’s Lockdown and China’s Slowdown

Brand Scandals and how they Impact Consumers - Featuring Subway

The Most Likely Scenario for Greece