All posts by Martin Kelly

Smiles at last as snow falls

Mount Buller snow 2 July 2015You know things are tough in in Australia's snowfields when Mt Buller announces a 2cm overnight "dump" of snow. But fresh snow has been a rare commodity this season so even a dusting is a blessing with school holidays well under way. And nice to see a smiley face.

Nicole Wiener, Director of Sales Asia-Pacific, Revinate

Nicole Wiener, RevinateBased in Australia, Nicole is the Director of Sales for the Asia Pacific region at Revinate and has been in the hotel industry for over 10 years, having had experience in both the hotel and hospitality vendor space.

Before joining Revinate, Nicole worked with companies including and has previously had a stint working in Asia.

Revinate helps hotels know more about their guests so they can deliver personalized experiences that create valuable relationships and lifelong customers.

Using guest data combined with a marketing engagement platform, hotels can better understand and engage their audiences, increase loyalty and revenue. 25,000 of the world's leading hotels trust Revinate to help them reinvent the guest experience.

Keith Chilek, Chief Technology Officer, Tourism Holdings Limited

Keith Chilek, THLJoining thl in August 2014, Keith is responsible for the technology direction, product development and creating a best in class user experience for thl customers.

Keith spent the previous 12 years in the States building consumer facing products in the education space, holding various positions ranging from Co-founding partner to Senior Vice President of Engineering.

With a passion for consumer driven product development and the
technology that powers it, Keith is changing the way that thl approaches the delivery of its digital solutions to its customers.

Paula Maxwell, Director of Trade Sales, Mantra Group

Originally from New Zealand, Paula Maxwell has over 20 years experience in the travel & hospitality industries both internationally and in Australia.

She is responsible for the management of trade partnerships across Mantra Group’s wholesale, international and online segments.

Mantra Group is Australia’s second largest hotel group with 116 properties and over 12,500 rooms under management across Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia.

Ricky Willis, Manager – Online Business AU/NZ, Sabre Pacific

Ricky Willis, Sabre PacificRicky has 10 years travel industry experience in various sales and commercial roles across sectors including hotels, TMC, GDS technologies relating to retail, direct corporate and government, and now the online sector.

In his current role of Manager – Online Business AU/NZ, Ricky owns and drives the commercial direction of Sabre Pacific’s online strategy across Australia and New Zealand.

Ricky owns the commercial relationships between Sabre Pacific’s key online partners.

Customer partners include large multinational OTAs, boutique OTA start-ups, traditional offline agents moving into the online space and our retail and TMC partners who consume online third party technologies.

In addition to managing customer partners, Ricky drives strategy for who and how Sabre Pacific integrates with other innovative online travel suppliers. These range from online booking solutions, non-GDS content and automation suppliers of the travel industry.

Anton Stanish, Regional Director Australia and NZ, HomeAway

AAnton is HomeAway's Director for Australia and NZ, responsible for all of their businesses in the region, which include the Stayz, Bookabach, YesBookit and HomeAway brands. He led the Stayz team through the sale of the business by Fairfax Media to HomeAway in 2013, and is excited to now be part of the leading online vacation rental marketplace worldwide. Anton joined Fairfax in 2006, and enjoyed successful stints in a number of senior strategy and digital product management roles. Before stepping into the Stayz General Manager role in 2011, other notable highlights within Fairfax included the start-up of the BrisbaneTimes and BusinessDay websites, as well as the acquisition of InvestSmart, an online managed funds business. Prior to joining Fairfax, Anton’s career spanned corporate development, product development and consulting roles in New Zealand, the UK and Australia, including time at Hoyts Cinemas and Fletcher Challenge.  Anton brings over 12 years of experience in growing online businesses. Anton holds a Bachelor of Engineering from the University of Cantebury (NZ), and an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management and London Business School. Born in New Zealand, Anton has lived in Sydney for the past 15 years. Outside of work, Anton hopes to be spotted on a golf course or cheering on the All Blacks as they win another Rugby World Cup, but he is more likely to be spending time with his three young children.

Andrew Hodges, Head of Revenue NZ and Fiji, Accor Pacific

Andrew Hodges, AccorAndrew plays a critical role in AccorHotels operations with direct responsibility for optimising the group’s revenue performance across 35 hotels in 11 brand portfolios, each targeted at different market segments from Luxury, Upscale, Midscale, Economy and Budget. is a key distribution lever for the group and Andrew has been integral in thought leadership and market implementation of strategies that has seen the New Zealand team recognised with AccorHotels highest global honour, the Bernache, for achieving significant market share growth of direct hotel bookings.

He has international Revenue Management and Distribution experience, having worked in markets including London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland.

Fergus Park, Head of Product Management, Amadeus IT Pacific

Fergus Park, Head of Product Management, Amadeus IT PacificFergus oversees the strategic rollout of Amadeus solutions for travel agencies in the Australian and New Zealand markets.

Fergus ensures that the Amadeus front, mid and back office, e-commerce leisure and corporate booking tools and the suite of Amadeus shopping tools are tailored for the Pacific region. Fergus also manages Amadeus’ local third party development partners.

Fergus joined Amadeus in 2000 and has worked in product and commercial management roles spanning the Middle East & Africa, India subcontinent, Philippines and Singapore.

Prior to joining Amadeus, Fergus worked across a number of executive roles in the Heavy Equipment and Private Credit Card Payment sectors.

Jon Randles – Marketer, Strategist, Trainer – Mosh Social Media

Jon Randles, Mosh Social MediaWith a degree in English Literature and Classical Studies and a career that includes being GM of a Language school in Japan and a Business Banking Manager, Jon Randles draws on a wide range of experience.

He is one of the founders of Mosh Social Media, one of the few agencies who focus purely in this space.

Jon likes to emphasise the ‘human’ nature of social media and having been at the coal-face since 2009, is one of the the most experienced community managers in New Zealand.

Sydney Burdick, Head of Global Affairs, trivago

Sydney Burdick, TrivagoSydney Burdick, Spokesperson and Head of Global Public Affairs for trivago, is based in Cologne, Germany. Her talks cover a variety of topics including metasearch, start-up growth, company culture and identity.

Having spent the past few years as Head of Public Relations at trivago, she helped shape the external and internal company communication, while also overseeing Social Media development, trivago’s Blog, Checkin, as well as Video communication.

In the past, Sydney worked in both editorial and advertising sales, most notably in New York City at Forbes and Travel + Leisure Magazine.

Born in California, she attended university in Madison, Wisconsin and Cape Town, South Africa. She is an avid traveler, lover of simple design, boutique hotels and being by the sea.