Groups360 and IHG Hotels & Resorts have released GroupSync Engage, the hospitality industry’s first integrated direct booking solution for groups to include both meeting space and guestrooms, according to the companies.
IHG is the first brand to launch the streamlined instant booking capability on the platform, which will initially be available at approximately 30 hotels in the U.S. in the coming weeks.
GroupSync Engage offers an online booking solution for meeting and event planners and hotel brands. Event planners can now book guestrooms, meeting space or both in an online transaction. This initial rollout marks the first of many deployments of GroupSync Engage with IHG this year.
“We have been working with IHG Hotels & Resorts to deliver greater value to the meetings and events customer,” said Kemp Gallineau, CEO of Groups360. “We believe that the future of booking meetings will be direct and online, especially for smaller and less complicated events. Our collaboration with IHG will extend to more IHG Hotels & Resorts throughout the U.S. and Canada in 2021.”
Gallineau noted that the solution enhances the relationship between planners and suppliers by offering, for the first time, real-time availability and group rates for both meeting space and guestrooms, so planners can book a meeting or event completely online. Simplifying booking eases the planners’ workload and frees up hotel staff and resources, which are mission-critical issues during this period of recovery for the hospitality industry.
This instant booking capability also allows customers to customize their event by selecting food and beverage options, audiovisual needs and meeting room configuration.
“We are always looking for ways to make the lives of meeting planners easier and more efficient—allowing them to instantly book a meeting space will eliminate the need to create an RFP,” said Derek DeCross, SVP, global sales with IHG. “We know not all planners are booking meetings right now, but together with our recently enhanced Meet With Confidence program, GroupSync Engage is just one more way we’ll be ready when they are.”