News Briefs


Optii Solutions Launches New Business Intelligence Solution

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Optii Solutions, a cloud-based hotel operations software, announced that it is launching a new and improved business intelligence solution. The new reporting and insights capabilities will drastically improve its customers’ ability to get the right data served in a way that shortens the data-to-decision time.

The new solution is user friendly and allows for easier and quicker interpretation of key metrics. With data stored in the cloud, users will have access to all reporting on-the-go and at their fingertips with mobile access from anywhere. Reporting, insights, and dashboards will span the full product suite, including Optii’s newly launched Preventative Maintenance solution. Soon, this powerful data solution will be coupled with artificial intelligence (AI) to not only present the data in a digestible format, but also enable AI-driven recommendations based on predictive analytics. As an example, the recommendation engine will draw upon vast amounts of data to recommend the optimal project cycles for maintenance and engineering tasks to extend asset life.

Additionally, with Optii’s focus on time, productivity, and performance, the new solution will allow for greater insight into team member performance, and allow for managers to make quicker decisions to maintain productivity and standards. Enhanced filtering capabilities will allow operational leaders to slice and view data quickly in a way that is most relevant to them, and at the right time.

Dino Pietropaolo, Chief Technology Officer, Optii Solutions, said: “Hospitality is an industry where timing is critically important to the business and guest satisfaction. While Optii has always focused on performance and productivity, our new business intelligence solution will take decision-making to a new level. By giving operators the information they need at their fingertips, we not only improve the decision-making, we improve the impact of those decisions as well. When this data is coupled with predictive analytics and AI, we take hospitality operations to the peak of efficiency and effectiveness.”

Deborah Pevenstein, Chief Revenue Officer, Optii Solutions, said: “Our focus has always been on helping hospitality leaders improve their operations. This new business intelligence solution is a natural evolution of that mission. We know that hotels might not get the opportunity to make a second first impression. So it’s critical that they get it right the first time. By shortening the time from data to decision, we help operators avoid a poor guest experience,and improve the bottom line.“


Papa Johns Reveals Updated Store Design for International Restaurants

papa johns in china

Papa Johns revealed a new design for international restaurants. 

Papa Johns new visual brand identity highlights premium ingredients through colors, lighting and decor. In a streamlined and flexible environment, Papa Johns team members will be equipped to more efficiently create quality food and serve it in the seamless, personalized ways that today’s customers prefer. Digital screens and ordering kiosks will help customers choose and customize their order in a sleek, modern and seamless experience.

Small, Flexible Formats

Papa Johns is among the brands introducing updated store designs. Krystal's  1,700-square-foot, double-lane drive-thru features an advanced, sleek design using a smaller footprint. In Tulsa, Oklahoma, Jack in the Box Inc. introduced its 1,350-square--foot, off-premise-only restaurant prototype. Last month, Panera Bread opened its New York Panera To Go, solely offering Rapid Pick-Up and Delivery shelves where guests and delivery drivers can easily pick up orders.  

Following the rollout of a more modern design for Papa Johns restaurants in North America, this new design for international restaurants will elevate the Papa Johns experience across the wide range of Papa Johns restaurant formats found around the globe. Whether a particular restaurant has been built to focus on delivery, serving dine-in guests, or a combination of the two, Papa Johns international franchise partners are being equipped with materials and finishes that can be accommodated and tailored for each of their restaurants’ specific needs.

The first restaurant constructed in the new design has opened in China’s Hubei province, and another seven locations are currently under construction or renovation across Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Kenya. 

“Papa Johns growth and momentum continues to attract leading operators who are eager to bring the Papa Johns experience to new parts of the world,” said Amanda Clark, Papa John’s Chief International and Development Officer. “By reinforcing our premium position within the QSR pizza industry, this new restaurant design gives current and potential franchise partners another reason to say yes to developing with Papa Johns.”

In creating the new store design, the colors, surface materials and messaging both inside and out were artfully chosen to indulge the senses and provide visual cues that reinforce Papa Johns crafted, quality products. On the walls, customers will find artwork depicting Papa Johns new “hand drawn happiness” illustration style that reflects both the vibrancy of the Papa Johns brand as well as the hand-crafted nature of its products.

To bring this new restaurant design to life, Papa Johns has begun implementing a phased approach that will gradually roll out this new experience to customers and team members as Papa Johns continues being “Hungry for Better.”


DailyPay Raises $260M

man paying employee cash

DailyPay has secured $260 million of capital to fuel growth domestically, expand internationally and further invest in product innovation. The funding is divided between revolving credit facility capacity provided by Barclays and Angelo Gordon, and new term loan funding from SVB Capital and a fund managed by Neuberger Berman.

DailyPay first announced a $300 million revolving credit facility from Barclays in March 2022. 

The fundraise announcement comes five months after Kevin Coop joined DailyPay as Chief Executive Officer. DailyPay partners with employers across various industries, including Fortune 500 companies such as Hilton


HotelPORT Announces Partnership with ComOps to Provide Advanced Contact Center Services for Hotels

logo, hotel port

HotelPORT announced a partnership with ComOps, a provider of multi-channel contact center solutions. The collaboration will provide hotels, restaurants, and spas with enhanced resources for guest services, restaurant reservations, and other contact center operations.

Through this partnership, HotelPORT and ComOps will combine their expertise to offer a comprehensive suite of solutions designed to improve the guest experience and streamline operations. With HotelPORT’s advanced technology and deep understanding of the hospitality industry combined with ComOps contact center strategy and support, HotelPORT customers will have access to a range of solutions that are both innovative and tailored to their specific needs.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with ComOps to provide our customers with cutting-edge solutions that will help them better serve their guests and streamline their operations," said Fred Bean, Founder & CEO of HotelPORT. "With ComOps, we have found a partner that shares our commitment to excellence and innovation in the hospitality industry and we are confident that this partnership will be a huge benefit to our customers."

"We are excited to be working with HotelPORT to bring our solutions to the hospitality industry," said Robert Levine, CEO of ComOps. "HotelPORT's expertise in the industry and commitment to innovation make them the perfect partner for us. Together, we will be able to offer hotels, restaurants, and spas a range of solutions that will help them enhance their operations and improve the guest experience."

The partnership between HotelPORT and ComOps is set to begin immediately, and customers can expect to see the benefits of the collaboration in the coming weeks and months.


Horwath HTL Announces Melissa Maher as Managing Director

melissa maher smiling for camera

Horwath HTL, an independent advisory brand focused one hundred percent on hospitality, tourism, and leisure development, announced that Melissa Maher has joined the group as Managing Director to support hoteliers with actionable items to optimize their business offerings.

"Melissa will bring her unique understanding of the technology and data sources our industry uses daily to our team. Her ability to look at all the data and sort through what is truly needed and the best way to interpret the data to enhance overall operations and push profitability will help our clients achieve best in class for their properties and portfolio," says John Fareed, Global Chairman, Horwath HTL.

Maher started her career in the hospitality business as a Sales Manager for the Courtyard by Marriott Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada. She most recently spent the last 21 years with Expedia Group in various positions, including Chief Marketing Officer & Senior Vice President of Marketing and Industry Engagement, Senior Vice President of Marketing & Innovation, Chief Inclusion Officer, Senior Vice President, Global Partner Group, Vice President Global Strategic Accounts & Industry Relations, and Regional Director of Market Management. In her time with Expedia, she formed strategic relationships with brand partners, founded the ownership council for hotel owners, and created B2B marketing programs to assist owners in growing their business more scalable way through innovative technology and special initiatives, including promotions, data, and insights.

"I am excited to join John and the Horwath HTL team in the California office. Having the ability to work with a global firm to bring commercial development and strategy to hospitality companies will allow me to utilize my experience and expertise to ensure hoteliers optimize their business offerings," says Melissa Maher, Managing Director, Horwath HTL.

Maher has been recognized with many honors throughout her career, including the Top 40 Women in Travel WINiT by Global Travel Associations. She was named one of the 30 Most Influential Women in Hospitality by Hotel Management Magazine. She serves as a board member and advisor for several organizations, including Women in Travel Thrive, Thayer Ventures, and StayBoutique. She formerly served as a board member for WINiT by GBTA and HSMAI. She also volunteers for organizations she closely connects with, including the Lupus Foundation of America, Crystal Cove Conservancy, and the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth. Maher holds a Bachelor's degree in Hotel Management and a Master's of Business Administration from the University of Nevada, located in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Horwath HTL's strategic advisory services include asset management, planning and development, positioning and repositioning, transaction services, and expert witness and litigation support.


Horwath HTL Announces Dorothy Dowling as Managing Director

Dorothy Dowling smiling for the camera

Horwath HTL, the world’s only independent advisory brand focused one hundred percent on hospitality, tourism, and leisure development, announced that Dorothy Dowling has joined the group as Managing Director to support global hospitality industry clients with go-to-market strategies to help grow scale, revenue, and profitability with services ranging from repositioning to commercial business planning and activation.

“Dorothy is an industry icon and brings the wealth of her knowledge and experience to our team,” said John Fareed, Global Chairman, Horwath HTL. “Given her background and vast experience, Dorothy will be a senior advisor at Horwath HTL who will bring her owner focus to enhance our ability to provide clients worldwide with superb expertise.”

With over 40 years of hospitality industry experience, she started her career in the hospitality business as a Senior Consultant with Laventhol and Horwath in Toronto. Dowling most recently spent the last 18 years as Chief Marketing Officer of Best Western, where she directed all marketing and commercial strategies, overseeing the brand’s loyalty program, digital transformation, advertising, public relations, e-commerce, and consumer and distribution partnerships, and hotelier support marketing including regional coop marketing. In her commercial role, she oversaw the global sales organization and supported strategic partnerships with global intermediaries, corporate customers, and digital partners. Dowling has held senior leadership positions with major hospitality industry companies, including Wyndham formerly Cendant, Forte Hotels, Travelodge Canada, Royal Host REIT, and ARAMARK. Dowling serves as a board member and advisor for several organizations, including DEI Advisors, HSMAI, Stay Boutique, Commit Advertising Agency, and WINiT by GBTA, as well as a member of the Board of Trustees for CubeSmart, a real estate investment trust and the third largest owner and operator of self-storage properties across the United States.

“I am absolutely thrilled to join John and the Horwath HTL team by creating a new Scottsdale office,” said Dorothy Dowling, Managing Director, Horwath HTL. “Being part of this global firm will allow me to enhance their offering, helping companies apply strategies and expert industry knowledge from business exploration to activation.”

Dowling was recently honored with Lifetime Achievement awards from the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) for her extraordinary commercial leadership, the NYU International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference for her innovation and business performance, and GBTA WINiT for her trailblazing and leadership work advancing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in our industry. Dowling will be opening a new office for Horwath HTL in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Horwath HTL’s strategic advisory services include asset management, planning and development, positioning and repositioning, transaction services, and expert witness and litigation support.