Keith Cotton, Senior Vice President Global BusinessAfter successful high-tech careers in Silicon Valley, Ted Zhang and Feng Ou, the entrepreneur duo with a decade-long experience in internet and travel information management, recognized the dearth of travel technology options for hoteliers in their native China and returned to Shanghai in December 2002 to launch DerbySoft. Over the last decade, DerbySoft has evolved and grown to become the leading travel electronic distribution company that connects most of the world's largest hotel companies worldwide to online distribution channels, such as online travel agents (OTAs) and travel metasearch sites.
Based in Shanghai, China, with North American headquarters in Dallas, TX, DerbySoft provides hotel companies with their online booking connectivity and caching technology. For the connected traveler who makes hotel bookings, Orbitz, Kayak, Expedia or Google Hotel Finder are all very familiar. However, for the hotel room supplier, the challenge lies in optimizing their presence in the online travel sites to capture more direct bookings via their own branded websites. For instance, when a consumer shops for a hotel online, the metasearch engine automatically gathers relevant booking information by simultaneously shopping a multitude of hotels’ central reservation systems (CRS) and OTAs for room rates and availability, and organizes and displays these to the consumer based on that metasearch site's particular business model. Since metasearch sites typically do not maintain an elaborate storage cache of hotel rates and availability, each hotel supplier system’s direct connection to a metasearch site can result in millions of additional search requests daily, which strain the already over burdened hotel CRSs.
“As a result of the recent growth of the travel metasearch sites, the caching that’s required to avoid CRS overload, while ensuring accurate room rates and availability at all times through all sites, has become a whole new sophisticated science, says Keith Cotton, Senior Vice President Global Business, DerbySoft.
Last year, DerbySoft launched its metasearch platform, which provides the connectivity and cache to buffer the hotel CRSs from the millions of metasearch shopping messages and help the hotel suppliers ensure they are providing consumers with the utmost accurate rates and availability.
“As a result of the recent growth of the travel metasearch sites, the caching that’s required to avoid CRS overload, while ensuring accurate room rates and availability at all times through all sites, has become a whole new sophisticated science"
For example, as a result of its new connection to DerbySoft, Marriott International’s CRS is now buffered from the onslaught of the repeated queries from multiple travel metasearch engines.
DerbySoft's MetaSearch Manager software, provides hotel suppliers—whether that be tour operators, OTAs, or hotel chains–with the ability to centrally manage portfolio-wide marketing campaigns and bidding on Google and similar metasearch engines. The system uses predictive analytics and years of historical data to intelligently determine the appropriate bid to win the optimal placement, within pennies. For the hotel’s digital marketing department, the MetaSearch Manager automates dozens of tedious tasks, saving time and resources in a cost-effective way, while ensuring their properties appear on the metasearch sites and push bookings directly to their own website.
Commenting on DerbySoft’s future plans Cotton says, “We cache an enormous amount of booking data for our customers, and many of them have expressed interest in us providing analytics on their data, to help them get a better understanding of booking patterns and trends. We’re poised to be a major supplier of Big Data within the hotel industry, and we have several initiatives underway to meet that goal.”