News Briefs


AI Startup BeCause Advances Tourism Sustainability Practices with Strong Support from Angel Investors

BeCause logo

BeCause, a startup transforming how the hospitality, travel, and tourism industries manage their sustainability data, has announced a significant early investment from renowned Danish entrepreneurs-turned-investors Carsten Mahler and Daniel Heskia. The $450,000 investment provides important financial backing for the Danish company’s next phase and brings valuable strategic guidance and advice from seasoned investors known for identifying successful enterprises and generating significant returns.  

The startup’s AI-powered sustainability hub simplifies, speeds up, and reduces costs for sustainability management in the tourism industry, freeing up resources and allowing for greater real-world impact. By eliminating 60% of the resources previously used for repetitive, error-prone manual administrative tasks, BeCause enables stakeholders to stay up to date with the latest sustainability improvements, resulting in a sixfold faster return on sustainability investments. This improvement ultimately leads to a significant increase in bottom-line profits, potentially amounting to millions of dollars for a typical hotel chain in the first year alone.

“Since our founding, we’ve already attracted some of the world’s leading travel and tourism brands, including, GreenKey and other leading travel & tourism companies, all of whom believe in our platform’s ability to transform their approach to sustainability and are committed to providing sustainable options to travelers while improving how their companies manage their sustainability efforts more efficiently,” said says Frederik Rubens Steensgaard, CEO and Co-founder of BeCause.

Solving the $21 billion problem in sustainability management

The investment, secured ahead of the startup’s official seed round opening, enables BeCause to expand its commercial and product development efforts with added resources and runway. “Ineffective sustainability management is costing hotel and travel brands over $8 billion each year, in addition to missed revenues of at least $13 billion annually based on our industry estimations,” added Steensgaard. “This early investment addresses a significant need in the industry and helps support our mission of making sustainability management simpler, faster and cheaper so that tourism companies can make a tangible impact on people, the planet and their profits.”

BeCause is also participating in the Alchemist Accelerator, a global top-ten incubator for enterprise software startups whose Demo Day, scheduled for May 30, has historically attracted more than 400 investors seeking high-impact opportunities.

A shared vision for a sustainable future in travel, tourism and beyond

Investors Mahler and Heskia have a track record of founding successful companies, including FundConnect, which before its acquisition, provided data management and reporting solutions for the financial sector and is now Europe's preferred neutral fund data infrastructure. The investors' success with FundConnect, which manages financial data similarly to how BeCause handles sustainability data, highlights their expertise in creating and scaling digital ecosystems. It also points to the potential of future applications for BeCause’s sustainability data solutions beyond the travel and tourism sector. 

The investment also comes at a time when the market for sustainability data solutions is maturing. Over the last 24 months, regulations and supply chain pressures have spurred demand for the solutions BeCause has developed – AI-enabled automation and streamlining of sustainability data and workflows across multiple stakeholders.

The startup’s technology framework connects certification entities such as Green Key and travel providers and distributors, enabling over 10,000 hotels and OTAs (Online Travel Agencies) to provide travelers with accurate and reliable sustainability data. These processes, traditionally handled via spreadsheets, emails and unconnected niche systems, are ripe for transformation, and the need to manage them efficiently to ensure compliance and competitive advantage is fueling BeCause’s growth.

Cross-sector expertise and guidance

“We see the potential impact of BeCause’s sustainability data management hub can have on businesses, and we believe in their unique approach to applying these principles to sustainability," says Carsten Mahler, former CEO of FundConnect and Danske Invest, one of the largest and oldest mutual funds in the Nordics. "We are excited to join Frederik and his team on this journey and provide guidance and support to help them achieve their profit with a purpose-driven goal. We have been impressed by the team.”

The investment was made through Prolab Holding, an entity held by Mahler and Heskia. Other investors in BeCause include Innovation Fund Denmark, Alchemist Accelerator, the Copenhagen School of Entrepreneurship, Vækstfonden, and Corde Invest.


P3 Rolls Out Customized Booking Engine for Omni Hotels & Resorts

p3 logo

Hotel technology company P3 is projecting significant growth in North America, following the deployment of a new customized booking engine for Omni Hotels & Resorts.

The new booking engine elevates the guest’s online experience with an improved UX/UI design and ecommerce payment integrations, and enhanced online loyalty functionality for Select Guest. Loyalty members can now personalize their stay preferences, access to dashboards to view their progression towards free nights, and more easily book reward stays.

This is the first time that Omni Hotels & Resorts has partnered with a third-party supplier to develop its online booking engine— and the project has helped P3 to establish an increased presence in the United States. P3 recently relocated their CEO, Phelim Pekaar from Dublin to a new office in Boulder, CO, in order to continue the expansion of a US-based team, who will be responsible for overseeing the delivery and ongoing support of the new booking engine for Omni.

“P3 is very excited to be working with Omni Hotels & Resorts and hopes to use it as springboard for further growth in North America,” said Pekaar. “Omni has been an anchor client for P3 in the US and this project has allowed us to demonstrate our expertise in building customized booking journeys that integrate seamlessly with Oracle’s Opera property management systems.”

Omni has now become part of a community of other global hotel groups using Opera alongside P3, which gives them access to a continual development process shared across a larger like-minded client base.

“The target for P3 is now significant growth in the North American market,” continued Pekaar. “We’re looking forward to working with other hotel groups that see Opera as a platform where they can build their technological infrastructure to gain a competitive advantage. Omni wanted to further elevate their customers' user experience, and P3 helps achieve that goal, as well as provide better functionality for their guests, a better platform for their brand, and a better ecommerce journey tailored to their specific offering.”

The new Omni Hotels & Resorts booking engine went live across their portfolio of properties on April 26th.


Survey: 42% of IT Leaders Told to Keep Data Breaches Confidential

atlas vpn bar graph

Data breaches can seriously threaten businesses, resulting in significant financial losses, legal ramifications, and reputational damage.

According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, 42% of IT leaders have been told to keep a data breach confidential. Furthermore, more than half of businesses admitted to experiencing a data breach in the last 12 months.

Nearly 30% of IT professionals had kept data breach a secret when they knew it should be reported. While these people should know better, they decided to side with the hackers and keep their crimes silent. In addition, customers whose information was stolen are also unaware that their data are in criminals’ hands.

When looking at the results by country, US businesses were the least responsible when dealing with data breaches. Over 70% of IT leaders were told to keep a data breach confidential, while 55% kept data theft a secret when they knew it should be reported.

Companies in Germany were the most responsible when dealing with data breaches. Of the IT leaders surveyed, 35% were advised to maintain confidentiality regarding a data breach, but only 15% kept it quiet. Furthermore, 54% neither were told nor kept a breach confidential.

​​Cybersecurity writer at Atlas VPN, Vilius Kardelis, shares his thoughts on data breach management:

“In an age where data breaches have become a grim reality, such practice undermines the fundamental principles of transparency, accountability, and proactive risk mitigation. Organizations must recognize that concealing data breaches erodes customers' trust and hinders the collective effort required to combat cyber threats.”

US businesses in trouble

To stay ahead in the face of technological advancements, businesses must recognize the gravity of the situation and adjust their security measures accordingly.

Overall 52% of companies have experienced a data breach in the last 12 months. However, when we take a closer look at country statistics, one of them stands out among the others.

About 3 out of 4 IT leaders in the US admitted that their company suffered a data breach in the last 12 months. This statistic seems even worse when combined with the fact that 55% of professionals stayed silent about data breaches. In the US, if the data breach affects more than 500 people, it is legally required to report it in 10 business days.

Meanwhile, 51% of businesses in the UK experienced a data breach in the last year. IT leaders working in Germany and Italy disclosed that nearly 50% of their businesses suffered a data incident. Data breaches also affected 44% of companies in Spain, while French businesses were the least likely to suffer such incidents, with only 42% experiencing data thefts.

To read the second part and the full article, head over to:


The Sandbox and Cipriani partner to Celebrate Timeless Italian Luxury Experiences in the Metaverse

illustration of metaverse version of reality at Harry's Bar

The Sandbox, a decentralized gaming virtual world and a subsidiary of Animoca Brands, announced a partnership with world-renowned hospitality company Cipriani to bring iconic Italian lifestyle and elegance to the metaverse.

The experience will allow players to walk the streets of Venice and discover the original Bellini, meet the Cipriani family, and take part in a relaxing and invigorating metaverse experience. The landmark Cipriani Wall Street Ballroom will also be recreated to host a masquerade ball, fashion shows, concerts, and other cultural events.

“We’re delighted to bring iconic Italian history into The Sandbox to further enrichen our players’ experiences,” said Sebastien Borget, COO and Co-Founder of The Sandbox. “In designing a metaverse for a such a diverse audience, we have the unique opportunity to represent nationalities and cultures from around the world, enabling us to connect with our players at a deeper level than traditional games.”

The Masquerade will be among the first events hosted on Cipriani’s LAND, where visitors will have a chance to  dance and listen to great music, all while hidden behind amazing masks. It will be a place to meet new people and learn about the experiences that Cipriani provides.

Cipriani’s LAND will be located in the trendy new Galleria neighborhood in The Sandbox. Launched on 1 December, 2022 at 3pm UTC, this neighborhood is built around fashion, media, and hospitality brands. Its upscale sense of style makes it the perfect place to host memorable Cipriani experiences.  

Players exploring Venice will be welcomed with a splash of time travel upon arriving at Harry’s Bar, the legendary 1930’s bar known for being a beloved place of gathering where writers, painters, artists, aristocrats, and royalty would meet to enjoy good company and drink a famous Bellini cocktail. The bar recently celebrated its 92nd anniversary on May 13th and will be featured in a new playable experience and accompanying NFT drop.


Hotel Effectiveness by Actabl Launches ShiftSwap Feature to Streamline Employee Schedule Management

actabl logo

Actabl, the hospitality software company that enables hotels to drive profit through actionable insights, is pleased to announce the launch of its all-new ShiftSwap feature for Hotel Effectiveness. Designed to improve the ongoing challenge of shift coverage, ShiftSwap allows hotel team members to view each other’s published schedules and offer to swap shifts with another employee. ShiftSwap provides a host of benefits to hotel Scheduling Managers (such as the General Manager, Assistant General Manager or Department Managers) and Hotel team members, including:

  • Easy-to-use mobile capabilities 

  • Automatic updates to employee schedules and the hotel master schedule in Hotel Effectiveness

  • Option to require manager approval before a swap or offer of a shift can be finalized

  • Insights to potential changes to employee total hours for the week, including overtime risk

  • Digital log of any requested swap or offer, along with the outcome

ShiftSwap was developed in response to the ongoing coverage crisis of increased labor demand, limited labor pools, and fluctuating staff availability, making it nearly impossible for managers to maintain proper staffing levels. This feature is part of Hotel Effectiveness' larger suite of labor management software solutions designed to help hotels optimize costs, leverage contract labor, streamline operations, and improve guest satisfaction.

"ShiftSwap solves fluctuation issues between the availability of hotel team members. It gives autonomy to the associates to manage their schedules and helps take the pressure off their managers,” said Edie Lowe, Vice President of Strategic Accounts at Actabl. “With our first outreaches of this campaign, we've seen the food and beverage staff benefiting the most, particularly where hotels have trouble staffing for food and beverage service for onsite restaurants.”

With the introduction of ShiftSwap, employees can now view their shifts and the entire team's schedule. Based on hotel settings, employees can filter between all departments and positions, just their department or their position(s). Managers save time by having a system in place that is programmed to understand scheduling, wage data, and overall strategy.


“Since beginning our partnering with Actabl, we have proudly used Hotel Effectiveness’ labor management products to tackle today’s challenging labor conditions,” shared Adam Dwelley, Food & Beverage Manager at The Ben West Palm. “The latest feature, ShiftSwap, goes above the other scheduling options out there. Built into an easy-to-use app, it negates the “mad dash” to pick up shifts that may cause shift swap deals to fall through. All in all it’s a great feature that contributes to the success of our managers, associates and hotel.”


Waterville Valley Resort Partners With Thynk

Thynk and Waterville Valley Resort Team members

Waterville Valley Resort has selected Thynk.Cloud to help them elevate their historical brand experience, automate and simplify the work of their employees and deliver continued innovation by embracing true business agility. 

Waterville Valley Ski Resort, an independent resort nestled in the white mountains of New Hampshire, was established 57 years ago as one of the first resorts with a self-contained village designed as a four-season resort. This resort has continued to thrive as an early adopter of new technology by bringing innovation from all over the world to North America. Their 10-year development plan set in 2020 is just one of the ways they are committed to innovation and growth all focused on the guest experience and family vacation experience.

In December 2022, they installed a United States first with the fastest chairlift in New Hampshire, built by MND Group based in France, demonstrating Waterville’s investment to be first and a true leader in moving the industry forward. 

“We are excited to roll Thynk out to our first customer in the U.S. and help them create a seamless experience for their customers and achieve great efficiencies across their team,” said Thynk CXO Melissa Jurkoic. “Having visibility into customer data, consolidated communication and streamlined operations is something that every hospitality team needs in their arsenal to deliver the highest customer service and to remain competitive.”

“It was a long journey reviewing potential solutions and trying to find one that would align with our goals.”, said Abby Guinan, Director of Sales & Leasing, Waterville Valley. “I knew we made the right decision from the start with Thynk, everything from the task-oriented onboarding process to the support from the team has been incredible and far less overwhelming than expected with a new system rollout.  I have no doubt that Thynk is exactly what we need to succeed and grow!”

Thynk.Cloud helps the hospitality industry build stronger digital relationships with their customers, increase their focus on margins, optimize their cost of sales and operations, and uncover new sources of business.

“We’re only 3 years into our 10-year plan and we have made huge advancements and continued investments in transitioning to the next level. For us, it’s all about the next customer and developing a great progression scenario for them to grow as individuals. We’re known as New Hampshire’s family resort and we are always looking for ways to elevate the customer experience.”, Tim Smith President & General Manager, Waterville Valley. “We know that the right technology can enable us to reach those goals here at Waterville Valley Resort. Thynk’s hospitality sales & operations system represents the best technology in the market today and we are pleased to solidify our partnership with Thynk.Cloud.”

Melissa Jurkoic, CXO at Thynk.Cloud added “We are delighted to announce this first win in the US, which represents further evidence of the opportunity for us to grow outside of EMEA.”