News Briefs

  • 9/27/2023

    Panera Bread Partners with ezCater to Scale its Workplace Catering

    Panera sandwiches

    ezCater, a provider of corporate food solutions, announced a partnership with Panera Bread to bring the brand’s iconic soups, salads, sandwiches, and more to the ezCater marketplace. The partnership combines ezCater’s extensive reach and authority in food for work with Panera’s deep brand recognition, delicious and diverse menu, and influence as a market leader in fast casual.

    Businesses can now order catering from nearly half of Panera’s bakery-cafes across the U.S. on the ezCater website and mobile app. In the coming months, Panera and ezCater intend to continue to add hundreds more locations to the ezCater marketplace as they continue to roll out the partnership.

    “Not only is Panera a market leader in fast casual, but they’re also a powerhouse in catering and one of our customers’ most requested brands,” said Mike O’Hanlon, Chief Partnerships Officer, ezCater. “We’re bringing the comfort and warmth of Panera’s crave-worthy offerings and the convenience and reliability of ezCater to workplaces across the country. We’re excited to launch this partnership and continue expanding it in the months and years to come.”

    From their beloved bagel packs and breakfast sandwiches to iconic soups, sandwiches, and delicious salads, Panera offers extensive options and variety for workplaces to satisfy all of their employees’ preferences. New catering offerings, such as the Toasted Baguette Sandwiches Assortment, deliver an abundant meal crafted with freshly prepared ingredients. With the new partnership, businesses can easily order food from Panera for all their food for work needs, while having complete visibility and control over their food spend through ezCater.

    “As two of the most established providers of food for work, Panera is excited to partner with ezCater to provide workplaces with even more access to our delicious menu of soups, salads, sandwiches, and more,” said Lisa Hamblet, Vice President, Off-Premise, Panera Bread. “An ideal complement to Panera’s existing catering service, ezCater adds additional reach and scale to expand to more businesses and take Panera Catering to the next level.”

    ezCater has more than 100,000 restaurants and caterers on its platform, from local independent restaurants to national chains. With its extensive expertise in corporate food solutions, ezCater helps its restaurant partners manage, analyze, and grow their catering businesses. To learn more about the ezCater Catering Growth Platform, visit

    To place a catering order from Panera or learn more about ezCater Corporate Accounts, visit

  • 6/21/2023

    Shiji and IPORT Partner to Transform Hotel Restaurant Operations with All-in-One Tablet and Payment Device Solution

    Shiji teaser logo

    Shiji, a global hospitality technology innovator, has partnered with IPORT, an award-winning manufacturer known for enhancing the usability of iPads and iPhones, to introduce an all-in-one software solution for hotel restaurants. This collaboration will provide hoteliers with a seamless combination of a tablet and payment device to maximize their F&B operations.

    The integrated iOS and payment device solution simplifies guest service for hotel restaurant servers, providing them with an effortless tool to cater to their guests' needs. As a certified Apple partner, Shiji and IPORT guarantee exceptional performance and reliability. Hoteliers can choose from multiple device options, including iPad Pro, iPad Mini, and iPhone, ensuring flexibility and compatibility with their operations.

    “IPORT products are built around modularity and flexibility that empower our hospitality customers to do more with the iOS platform. We are thrilled to partner with a leading iPad and iPhone cloud PMS and POS platform provider like Shiji,” said Chris Lawson, Head of Partnerships, IPORT. “We look forward to innovating with Shiji in disrupting legacy, monolithic providers who have limited the industry from harnessing the power of iOS and mobility. The future is bright, and the possibilities are endless with IPORT, iOS, and Shiji.”

    "The partnership with IPORT is a significant milestone for Shiji in our commitment to provide innovative technology solutions for the hospitality industry," said Ryan King, Senior Vice President of Shiji in the Americas. "By combining our expertise with IPORT’s hardware solutions, we empower hoteliers to streamline restaurant operations and deliver exceptional guest experiences. This collaboration represents another step forward in our dedication to driving success in the Americas, and globally."

    The tablet and payment device solution seamlessly integrates with multiple payment gateways, allowing hoteliers to choose the system that best suits their needs. By simplifying the payment process, it reduces operational complexities, minimizes errors, and saves valuable time and resources for hoteliers.

  • 9/27/2023

    Hilton of Santa Monica Offers Guests Functional Beverage Technology

    cubo logo

    The Hilton of Santa Monica announced its latest initiative is with CUBO Beverages, and it will bring a next-gen wellness platform to its guests and visitors. With an increasing emphasis on wellness and nutrition in travel, this partnership embodies both brands' commitment to providing enriched experiences that resonate with modern travelers and local communities.

    The CUBO platform, located conveniently in the hotel's kitchen and now available to patrons, offers a wide array of functional beverages ranging from boosters infused with turmeric or spirulina, coffee enhanced by Lion's Mane or Reishi mushrooms, to juices bursting with exotic fruits, supplements, and vegetables. Designed for ease and efficiency, the pod-based system functions similarly to the well-known Keurig but is exclusively for functional/wellness drinks, allowing guests to craft their preferred wellness beverage at just the touch of a button.

    "We're thrilled to be collaborating with the Santa Monica Hilton for this initiative," said Grichka Frachisse, CEO, CUBO Beverages. "Our shared vision focuses on enhancing wellness for not just travelers but the broader community. The introduction of a one-touch wellness system in such a renowned hotel amplifies the message of its essential role in the hospitality sector.”

    The decision to add CUBO's system was driven by several emerging trends and benefits:

    Wellness Demand: Modern-day travelers, irrespective of their travel purpose, increasingly prioritize wellness. CUBO's vast array of functional beverages, accessible with sheer convenience and no mess or cleanup, aligns perfectly with this shift, providing guests with both ease and nutritional boosts.

    Unique Offerings: The hospitality industry is fiercely competitive. For hotels, differentiation is key. Incorporating avant-garde wellness platforms such as CUBO offers an exclusive amenity tailored to the specific needs of contemporary guests and those in the local community.

    Operational Ease and Efficiency: CUBO's integration is smooth and hassle-free. Its user-friendly design requires minimal staff training and complements existing hotel operations, showcasing the future of automated hospitality solutions.

  • 9/27/2023

    Inspire Brands Streamlines Omnichannel Commerce Across North American Restaurants via Expanded Fiserv Relationship

    Inspire Brands logo with subbrands underneath it

    Fiserv, Inc., a global provider of payments and financial services technology solutions, announced an expansion of its relationship with Inspire Brands, a multi-brand restaurant company whose portfolio includes more than 32,000 restaurants worldwide.

    The expanded relationship builds on a successful foundation in which Fiserv has helped power connected commerce experiences within the Inspire portfolio for more than two decades. Continuing its existing relationship with their Baskin-Robbins, Dunkin’, and Sonic brands, Fiserv will now unify in-store, in-app, and online commerce for several more of Inspire’s popular restaurant concepts. The agreement will add several thousand additional restaurants to the relationship and include both company-owned and franchised locations.

    "As buying experiences become more connected to customer loyalty, enabling seamless interactions across channels has become critical to our success," said Kate Jaspon, Inspire CFO. "Inspire’s expanded relationship with Fiserv will simplify and improve how we serve our customers through any platform or payment method they choose."

    Inspire will leverage Carat, the global commerce platform from Fiserv, to enable payment experiences across its digital and physical footprint, enhance gift solutions, and maximize efficiency by unifying settlement, reporting, analytics, and other functions. This will also help simplify how Inspire connects its portfolio of restaurants to innovative payment capabilities and technology providers, allowing each brand to enable the payment experiences that best fit its unique customer needs.

    "Our expanded relationship with Inspire exemplifies how large enterprises are making targeted investments to create deeper, more unified experiences for customers while optimizing costs," said Casey Klyszeiko, Head of Carat and Global eCommerce at Fiserv. "By simplifying their commerce model, Inspire will be able to better streamline in-house operations."

    Carat is the global commerce platform from Fiserv that orchestrates payments and experiences for the world’s largest businesses, including eight of the 10 largest global quick-service restaurants (QSRs). With Carat, leading brands can unify their commerce, optimize transactions, and imagine and realize new ways to engage with customers.

  • 9/27/2023

    IHG One Rewards Mobile App: Redefining Travel Through Technology

    IHG Mobile App

    The IHG One Rewards mobile app is redefining the travel experience with a greater emphasis on customer satisfaction – and it's earning rave reviews. The app's intuitive design and new features seamlessly guide guests through their booking journey from inspiration to customizing their in-room stay experience, all in the palm of their hands. As IHG's fastest-growing booking channel, the app has driven more than half of all digital bookings in 2023 and is the main platform for loyalty engagement. With the ability to inspire adventure, maximize loyalty earnings, and seamlessly integrate into the in-hotel experience, the app has received high ratings of 4.9 stars on the Apple store and 4.8 stars on the Android store.

    "At IHG, we believe that technology can redefine hospitality and our IHG One Rewards mobile app is a testament to that. We knew that by placing our app at the center of delivering choice and control to our guests, we could stand out in the industry," said Jolie Fleming, Senior Vice President, Guest Products and Platforms at IHG Hotels & Resorts. "With new features rolling out weekly, we continue to offer greater customization and increased guest engagement through this channel. We have seen positive reviews from our most loyal guests who use the app devotedly and can't travel without it!"

    The IHG One Rewards app is packed with new features that set it apart from other hotel apps, including:

    • New! Travel Wishlists. An in-app exclusive experience, members can now save properties to their Wishlists page to view later – easily allowing them to track future stays or add past stays they enjoyed to their list.
    • Wi-Fi Auto Connect. When enabled, this feature automatically connects a guest's mobile device to a property's Wi-Fi as soon as they walk through the doors. A one-time sign on is required and takes only two taps to join. More than 1 million users have signed up globally.
    • Room charges in real time. Guests at more than 3,000 hotels across the Americas can view their room charges as they happen during their stay. Available on the Reservation Summary page, guests can see in-room charges such as room service and dining charges.
    • Room details and customization. Guests can now easily see the size of the room booked, so there are no surprises when they show up! Plus, IHG has made it easier for guests to personalize their stays, whether that's by booking a room with a view of the mountains or selecting one with more space.
    • Seamless loyalty benefits experience. IHG One Rewards members can conveniently explore their current loyalty tier benefits and discover the exciting rewards they can unlock as they progress to higher tiers, as well as access and redeem Milestone Rewards, including free nights, food and beverage vouchers and complimentary suite upgrades.
    • Updated Wallet. Google and Apple Wallet users can add their IHG One Rewards membership and reservations to their digital wallet allowing for convenience and ease during travel.
    • More languages. The re-architected app is available in 20 languages across six global and Greater China focused app stores.

    Jolie Fleming added: "Our app is designed for a new kind of loyalty program and for a new kind of traveler. We designed this app with our customers and are proud to say that it has exceeded expectations. The app's exceptional adoption rate, positive user feedback, and transformative impact on guest experiences has reinforced IHG's standing as a global leader in redefining hospitality through technology."

    The IHG One Rewards mobile app also offers members a Best Price Guarantee with no hidden fees; and the ability to track the availability of rooms in their favorite hotels. Plus, guests are able to use guest service support and chat directly with customer care representatives directly in the app. And, for our top tier Diamond Elite members, they get priority access to Dedicated Diamond Support through the app.

    The future of the IHG One Rewards mobile app

    The mobile app has come out of a transformational year and new updates are always on the horizon. Upcoming features include the launch of Apple AirPlay at IHG Hotels & Resorts and virtual 360° tours of select Hotel Indigo properties globally. Not to mention, guests will soon be able to share Wishlists with friends and family, making the travel booking experience even more engaging and fun. 

  • 9/27/2023

    Presto Signs CKE Franchise StarCorp’s 58 Carl’s Jr. Locations

    presto logo teaser

    Presto Automation Inc., one of the largest drive-thru automation technology providers in the hospitality industry, announced a newly signed agreement that demonstrates the company’s continued momentum and strengths in technology, enterprise sales, integration, and implementation.

    Presto signed CKE Franchise Group StarCorp and all of its 58 Carl’s Jr. locations, where it will be the only Voice AI vendor. After a successful and competitive pilot at 2 stores lasting more than 6 months, StarCorp decided to launch Presto Voice at full scale. Presto was able to achieve a 91% upsell offer rate during the pilot period. The companies are planning to jointly roll out these locations in the coming months.

    Presto is currently taking several new Voice locations live for its customers each week, which it believes is a testament to the positive feedback it has received from customers and restaurant guests to date.

    “We are delighted that StarCorp has signed its Carl’s Jr. locations with Presto after an extensive pilot and believe that action speaks volumes,” said Dan Mosher, President of Presto. “StarCorp has been an incredible partner, and this expanded partnership is a further proof point of the benefits of our Voice solution.”

    “We are very excited to be working with Presto,” said Warren Forsythe, President of StarCorp. “We have a standard of excellence to uphold at StarCorp, and we chose Presto’s solution as it delivers on our expectations of the technology, including driving increased revenue and more efficient operations, which we believe will be essential for all restaurants.”

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