​​​​​​​KT and MVI Partner for AI Hotel Business in Asia, Middle East

Michal Christine Escobar
Senior Editor (Hotels)
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Kim Young-Woo, right, KT's vice president and leader of its Global Business Group, is photographed at the MOU signing ceremony on February 15, 2019.

KT Corporation and Hong Kong-based MVI Systems Ltd. signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for joint artificial intelligence (AI) hotel services and business development in the Asia-Pacific and Middle East regions.

The signing ceremony, held at the KT Gwanghwamun Headquarters in Seoul, was attended by Kim Young-Woo, KT'svice president and head of its Global Business Development Unit; Karl Sin and Anke Gill, co-founders and executives of MVI Systems Ltd.; and other representatives of both companies.

KT will link its GiGA Genie Hotel, a multi-functional, voice-recognizing service platform powered by AI, with MVI's information and entertainment solutions based on Internet Protocol TV (IPTV). The partnership aims at providing voice-activated room automation, robot-delivered amenities, Korean pop culture content and other smart services by the end of the year. Service models will be developed and tested during the first half of this year.

Hotels in the Asia-Pacific and the Middle East regions are the partnership's initial target markets for AI-driven smart services. The two companies plan to further explore joint business projects through R&D collaboration to accommodate customer demands, and to expand business opportunities around the world by providing innovative, customized hospitality services.

MVI is a provider of IPTV-based information and entertainment solutions for hotels, hospitals, multi-dwelling units and enterprises, mainly in the Asia-Pacific and the Middle East. The company's solutions have been implemented in more than 60,000 rooms, including those of major international hotel chains.

KT, a South Korean telecommunications company, is pioneering a new era in the hospitality industry with its cutting-edge AI technology. In July 2018, it opened the Novotel Ambassador Seoul Dongdaemun Hotels & Resorts, the country's first hotel offering AI-assisted room services.

The company has since provided its AI service platform to other luxury hotels in Seoul, including the L'Escape Hotel run by Shinsegae Chosun Hotel and the Grand Ambassador Seoul associated with Pullman.

In cooperation with these hotels, KT is providing AI-based services for hotel information, integrated room control and smart concierge services, contributing to the hotels' reputation and prestige. The services are currently available in Korean and English. Services in Chinese and Japanese will be available during the first half of this year.