A new venue sourcing tool, expanding market presence worldwide and a growing demand for event technology application are expected to result in a 70 per cent growth in revenue and customers this year for global end-to-end event management software specialist, etouches.
The company unveiled its new venue sourcing tool at AIME 2017 on Monday, a solution that enables event planners and organisers to search and compare more than 225,000 venues worldwide, issue RFPs, and compare and qualify responses based on set criteria.
Oni Chukwu, president & CEO at etouches, who spoke to TTGmice e-Weekly, said the tool is “highly intelligent”.
“It is more intelligent than what’s available in the marketplace. It gives you optimal choices of venues. It will show you how much the rate varies for different venues across different dates, which helps you make money-saving choices. It will also figure out where your delegates are coming from and how much you’ll need to spend on airfares should you pick a certain destination on a certain date.”
The tool can be subscribed on its own or part of etouches’ complete event management system.
Commenting on the 70 per cent growth projection, Chukwu said it will come on top of the company’s 50 per cent growth last year.
“Our company is doing very well. In Asia-Pacific alone, we saw a significant growth in large enterprise customers of almost 55 per cent,” he remarked.
“To support our continued growth, we are adding close to 100 people to our team this year, mostly in Asia-Pacific, who will handle sales, account management, data science and customer support,” he said, adding that business forays are being made this year into China and Hong Kong.
Chukwu explained the “extraordinary growth” is possible as the “market is under-penetrated” and etouches is the “only end-to-end event management solution provider in the world with an extensive support team and hardware on the ground”.
“Of the Global 5000 Companies, only 10 per cent are using event management solutions. Our competition isn’t actually other solutions providers rather it is the internal users themselves who are preferring to stay in their comfort zone by using traditional manual methods in event planning, execution and post-event analysis,” he said.
But Chukwu sees a rapid change taking place in that sphere, as Internet of Things applications seep into people’s daily lives and more people of the younger and tech-savvy generation join the workforce.
“People don’t use use one technology at home and a different one at work. They expect the same technology to carry through, and they expect the same level of technology when they are at work and at events,” he explained.
He noted that people’s familiarity with augmented reality, virtual reality and immersive videos is changing the way events are conducted.
While he admitted that augmented reality products are pricey to produce and execute now, he pointed out that the cost is coming down. Immersive videos are a more affordable option for now, and such marketing collaterals can be produced at a few thousand dollars, with more elaborate versions costing more.