Canadian born Jonas Software, a holding company for software providers across many sectors, has decided to add travel to its portfolio of verticals.
Last June, it created Jonas Hospitality, a tech provider to more than 5,500 hotels, resorts, and spas in North America.
It built the company through acquisitions. In November, Jonas acquired Leonardo, which helps hotels manage their digitized visual assets to market their properties online. In 2017, Jonas expanded to Europe when it acquired BookAssist, a Dublin-based provider of digital marketing and direct booking hotels primarily to European hotels.
Jonas and some of its subsidiaries didn’t respond to several invitations to speak for this story.
Yet it appears that Barry Symons, CEO of parent group Jonas Software, has begun to group some of the smaller tech vendors that have grown up to serve independent and other smaller hospitality players with property management tools and online marketing and distribution expertise.
“Barry appears to be picking up distressed assets, or at least those at the bottom of the shopping lists of more preferred suitors, in a bid to own the long tail,” commented Sundeep Chanana, CEO of technology investment bank Horatio Partners. “It’s hard to believe what he’s cobbling together can compete with the likes of Sabre, Oracle, and Amadeus in building hospitality enterprise services.”
In 2016, Jonas acquired two hotel property management systems: Multi-Systems International (MSI), which focuses on mid-tier, economy, and extended stay segments, and Springer-Miller Systems, which also has a property management system Atrio, a customer relationship management platform for mostly upscale hotels, resorts, and spas.
More such roll-ups are likely. “Benefits include back-office synergies as well as complementary technology solutions addressing a more holistic solution set that touches hotels, alternate lodging, booking and distribution systems, and channel management,” said Toni Portmann, the former CEO of DHISCO, a hotel distribution tech company that last year she sold to travel tech company RateGain.
“There often exists terrific economic benefits to buy and integrate, such as taking advantage of economies of scale and lower the unit cost of customer acquisition,” Portmann said.
Many hotel tech vendors, such as Alibaba-backed Shiji Group in hosptiality tech, are pushing in the strategic direction of uniting under umbrella groups for shared efficiencies. Some are outright building “full stack-native platforms,” like Amadeus, Sabre, and Oracle are attempting.
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