News Briefs

  • 1/9/2024

    Omni Hotels & Resorts Appoints Jeff Doane to Newly Created Chief Commercial Officer Role

    Omni Hotels updated logo

    Omni Hotels & Resorts is pleased to announce the appointment of Jeff Doane as its new Chief Commercial Officer. With over 20 years of hospitality experience, Doane brings a wealth of expertise from his previous senior executive roles with Fairmont Raffles Hotels International and most recently as Chief Commercial Officer at Accor North America.

    Doane will report directly to President Kurt Alexander and oversee the development and execution of Omni’s integrated commercial strategy across Omni’s current portfolio of hotels and resorts in the United States and Canada. He will oversee all disciplines within marketing including brand and tactical marketing, public relations, partnerships, social media and digital platforms ( He will also be responsible for oversight of Omni’s global and hotel sales organizations, revenue management, the Select Guest Loyalty program as well as distribution and customer service.

    The appointment of Doane is particularly significant as Omni has invested over $2 billion into its portfolio over the last five years and has committed $1.5 billion in portfolio enhancements over the next five years.

    "We are thrilled to welcome Jeff to the Omni family. His experience leading high performing teams at successful brands, like Fairmont, will be a key asset to our organization as we continue to elevate our brand position and differentiate Omni Hotels & Resorts in the marketplace,” said Kurt Alexander. “Being able to add a leader like Jeff in concert with the recent addition of our new COO, Vince Parrotta, also underscores Omni’s commitment to hiring best-in-class talent.”

    In his senior leadership roles at Fairmont Raffles Hotels International and Accor, Doane consistently surpassed top-line revenue goals, elevated loyalty membership, and captured greater market share year after year.

    Doane actively contributes to the industry by serving on the HSMAI CMO and Foundation Boards as well as the US Travel CEO Board and the Plug & Play Hospitality Vertical Advisory Board. Doane holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

  • 1/9/2024

    CES 2024: Vox AI to Debut Conversational Voice AI for Drive-Thrus

    Vox AI logo

    At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2024 in Las Vegas, Vox AI's advanced machine learning technology  for  the drive-thru is making its debut. 

    The Amsterdam-based compnay is part of the NL Tech Pavilion in Eureka Park at the Venetian Expo, Booth 62100, from January 9-12

    In the US there are over 200K drive-thru restaurants in the U.S. — which represent about 70% of fast food sales. Vox AI's voice AI that is perceptive, speaks 35 languages is, highly accurate, and able to replicate the speed, tone and rhythms of a human voice, Vox AI is currently in the midst of a proof-of-concept pilot with one a large fast food chain.

    "We want to redefine human-AI interaction, making it so seamless and intuitive that it becomes a natural part of daily life," said Maurice Kroon, founder and CEO of Vox AI. "We're not just developing a tool; we're cultivating a new standard for communication. We've assembled a group of world-class experts in AI and technology alongside veterans in the QSR business, all united by a shared mission to innovate and excel. Our culture is one of relentless pursuit of excellence and a deep commitment to industry transformation." Learn more at

    View a short video of Vox AI in action here.

  • 1/9/2024

    Naf Naf Middle Eastern Grill Partners with Gift A Meal

    handshake partnership

    Naf Naf Middle Eastern Grill, the Fast Casual Restaurant destination for their authentic Middle Eastern cuisine, announces a new collaboration with Gift A Meal, an innovative cause-marketing platform committed to addressing local hunger in the local communities where Naf Naf restaurants operate.

    Through this collaboration, every customer who captures a photo of their delicious Naf Naf order will trigger a donation to a local food bank. The initiative is designed to provide a meal to those in need, aligning with Naf Naf Grill's commitment to bring people together and share a meal beyond the dining table.

    "We are very excited to embark on this journey with Gift A Meal, we remain focused on making a real positive impact in the community. The goal is to contribute in helping those facing food insecurity especially after the holidays which is a critical time when donations drop. We look forward to the shared success and impact this program will bring, as we work together to make a difference, one photo, one meal at a time." -Nico Nieto, CMO of Naf Naf Grill.

    "GiftAMeal is thrilled to join forces with Naf Naf.. Everything on Naf's is delicious, fresh and beautiful, and their craveable food leads to mouth-watering photos and now customers can turn those into a meal for their local community food bank! We are excited to watch the Naf Naf customers help heal hunger across 12 states - spice it up and share a photo!" - Gift A Meal's Alison Van Bergen

    The program will be available across all Naf Naf Grill 39 locations nationwide, until the end of February.

    To learn more about Naf Naf Middle Eastern Grill, visit

  • 1/9/2024

    PAR Technology Launches PAR Wave POS Terminal

    par WAVE WIDE

    ParTech, Inc. (PAR) introduces the PAR Wave - an all-in-one touch panel.

    The PAR Wave reflects PAR’s commitment to meeting future restaurant industry needs, seamlessly blending functionality, performance, security, and innovative design. It emerges as a solution for businesses seeking a more efficient and aesthetically pleasing future.

    Designed with a focus on innovation and versatility, the PAR Wave perfectly aligns with PAR's dedication to delivering inventive solutions tailored to the evolving demands of the restaurant and hospitality industries.

    In response to the rising demand for efficiency, adaptability, and sustainability, PAR Wave, a cutting-edge touch panel, seamlessly integrates with Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) strategies. Positioned as a pioneer in forward-thinking hardware, it meets the evolving goals of brands striving for excellence.

    Recent industry trends emphasize the increasing importance of innovative design and functionality among leading brands, echoing the broader shift towards next-generation hospitality solutions. PAR recognizes the growing significance of these aspects in restaurant operations and strives to provide solutions that harmonize with the evolving landscape.

    Restaurants are embracing a future where products must be functional, secure, and designed with the user in mind. The PAR Wave's sleek design ensures maximum efficiency—minimized downtime, supporting contactless transactions, and low-maintenance, user-friendly devices. Drawing on over 40 years of restaurant hardware experience, it embodies meticulous feedback from customers and extensive market research.

    PAR believes this will become increasingly important as restaurants seek cutting-edge solutions that resonate with consumers, especially the younger demographic.

    Key Features 

    • Versatile Functionality: The PAR Wave serves as a multifunctional touch panel suitable for POS terminals, ordering options, and table games, offering endless possibilities for businesses.
    • Slim and Aesthetically Pleasing Design: With a slim and durable design, the PAR Wave takes up minimal counter space, maintaining an aesthetically pleasing ambiance in restaurants.
    • Multiple Mounting Options: Traditional POS Terminal Counter Mount, Low-Profile Counter mount (with a collapsible stand), Wall Mount, Pole Mount, Dual-Monitor Pole Mount, Kiosk Mount, VESA mount – the PAR Wave does it all.
    • Environmentally Conscious: Intentionally designed for eco-friendliness, the space-efficient design minimizes packaging and shipping impact, reducing the overall shipping and warehouse footprint by 50%.
    • Self-Ordering Options: Various guest-facing configurations, including LCD touch screens for advertising, provide businesses with additional opportunities to engage with consumers.
    • Durable and Resilient: Withstanding spills, grease, high temperatures, and common cleaners, the PAR Wave ensures reliability in the demanding hospitality environment.
    • Powerful Processing Options: Equipped with powerful INTEL CPU processing options, the PAR Wave can run complex software efficiently, offering reliability for diverse operational needs.
    • Windows 11 Ready: Keeping pace with the latest technology, the PAR Wave is Microsoft Windows 11 ready, ensuring compatibility with the latest software advancements.

    For additional information on the PAR Wave please click here.

  • 1/9/2024

    Chatmeter Launces Pulse AI: Signals

    screen shot from chatmeter

    Chatmeter, a provider of reputation management and multi-location intelligence, announced the release of Pulse AI: Signals, enabling brands with critical customer and location insights in real time to grow their business.

    Multi-location businesses have traditionally used keyword-matching sentiment analysis and Net Promoter Score surveys to get a surface-level understanding of customers. Now, these businesses can type any question into Signals, which will analyze their reviews, social media and surveys to deliver the exact information needed, with the data to back it up, in real time. 

    “We’re in a new era for multi-location brands,” said John Mazur, CEO of Chatmeter. “Every brand is at risk of their next mention going viral and costing them millions in revenue before they’re even able to respond. Not anymore, thanks to Signals and its pioneering use of generative AI.” 

    Elevating the Guest Experience

    “Armed with Chatmeter's insightful data, we've made swift and effective changes to elevate the guest experience,” said Richard Clarke, senior manager of loyalty and guest feedback at Northland Properties. “As a result, we've enjoyed future bookings, repeat stays, and greater guest loyalty. Chatmeter's ability to close the loop on customer feedback and generate positive results is truly impressive.”

    Chatmeter was one of the first reputation management platforms to bring advanced sentiment analysis to the market in 2017 and is now the first to use generative AI to empower multi-location businesses to:

    • Quickly make better, more informed decisions from real customer feedback through generated reports that answer the mission-critical questions brands have about their customer experience, products, locations, and more. 
    • Gain an even deeper understanding of every customer’s experience and how  specific locations are performing by using insights from specific regions, locations, providers, timeframes, and more, along with all of the customer reviews and data, to make informed decisions that drive real business impact. 

    Chatmeter is using multiple large language models, including internal models trained on its own data, to deliver actionable insights in real time.

    Signals uses an advanced data pipeline to process reviews, social posts and surveys through multiple AI models, including custom-trained versions to deliver the insights multi-location businesses need on topics such as:

    • Product feedback
    • Customer satisfaction
    • Facilities operations
    • Critical business risks
    • Customer and employee safety
    • Regional strengths and weaknesses
    • And many more….

    Across a multi-location brand, thousands of reviews, social posts and surveys may be processed by Signals daily. With the data processed and stored using AI, businesses can ask questions of their data, and get detailed answers back, including insightful analysis, attributing data and downloadable reports.

    Signals is now available to Chatmeter customers with the Performance and Intelligence bundles. Additional Pulse AI features will be available later in 2024. 

  • 1/9/2024

    Richtech Robotics Unveils Advanced AI Capabilities, Elevating Human-Like Performance for Robot Bartender at CES 2024

    ADAM the humanoid AI robot barista from Richtech

    Richtech Robotics Inc. (“Richtech Robotics”), a Nevada-based company and a provider of AI-driven service robots, announces its advanced AI capabilities for its robotic solution ADAM at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2024 held in Las Vegas January 9th-12th, in the North Hall, booth 9335. Richtech Robotics believes these advancements will revolutionize ADAM's capabilities beyond its role as a robot bartender, barista, or boba tea maker, enabling it to engage in sophisticated conversations with customers and emulate human actions with exceptional accuracy.

    By analyzing and adapting to human-like motions, ADAM will become more interactive, accurately predicting and catering to customers' needs with improved precision. This advancement aims to not only enhance efficiency in task execution but also create a more engaging and fluid interaction between ADAM and customers. Richtech Robotics believes this innovative feature will redefine the landscape of robotic assistance in hospitality, fostering a seamless and enjoyable experience for patrons while supporting businesses with enhanced operational capabilities.

    "This technology not only addresses the current labor challenges but enhances the  guest experience, making the robots more engaging and interactive," said Matt Casella, Richtech Robotics’ President. "Our goal is to alleviate the labor burden, enabling restaurants and bars to support their current staff while focusing on other areas of their business, helping them to grow, scale, and improve their bottom line.” 

    The new capabilities aim to elevate personalized interactions and significantly enhance efficiency, facilitating quicker service and seamless integration of robots across various settings. The enhancements will soon be available to customers in the U.S., and are expected to transform the entire robotic dining experience. 

    Richtech Robotics completed its IPO in November 2023 and addresses a critical need within the $4.7 trillion U.S. hospitality market, which is forecasted to reach $5.8 trillion by 2027. Despite this growth, technology remains an underdeveloped aspect in the industry, compounded by persistent staffing shortages that prevent restaurants and bars from capitalizing on the industry's resurgence.

    As a dedicated partner to hospitality businesses, Richtech Robotics understands the challenges faced by today’s restaurants and bars, and has developed technology that aims to remove such barriers. ADAM, an innovative robot leveraging machine learning, AI, and edge computing, specializes in creating customizable drinks, enhancing productivity and experience through engaging 24/7 service.

  • Show MoreShow More
This ad will auto-close in 10 seconds