SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – LodgeNet Interactive Corporation, which was acquired by private equity firm Colony Capital in March, announced today that it has been rebranded as SONIFI SolutionsTM. The move is part of a broader strategy intended to give more visibility and control to the company’s hotel and healthcare customers, as it shifts its business model to work in partnership with those it serves.
With a renewed focus on the content and connectivity solutions its customers need to succeed in today’s digital marketplace, new branding strategy represents the company’s commitment to a multi-faceted transformation that positions the company for future success. With more than 1.4 million hotel rooms reaching more than 28 million unique upscale travelers every month in North America, SONIFI offers unmatched scale, with a hospitality room base two times larger than any competitor while also boasting the industry’s largest network of field service and technical contact center personnel.
Concurrent with the rebranding to SONIFI SolutionsTM, the company is also launching a new hospitality platform, the SONIFI STAY1000 system, a flexible guest entertainment solution that leverages the company’s large commercial platform.
The STAY1000 solution offers has software-centric features that have been designed based on the input of senior hospitality leaders. Unlike other industry solutions, which are primarily scaled via hardware updates, the STAY1000 system delivers an improved guest-entertainment experience that will offer hotel owners and operators continuous improvement via periodic software updates. This content and connectivity solution enables each property to better match the unique behavior of their ‘connected guest.’
The new solution is now available and provides hoteliers with a number of powerful tools, including:
• Interactive programming, target-casting by room, and customer type, expanded pay-per-view choices and segmented viewing via flexible free and paid a-la-carte options for hotel guests.
• An interactive programming guide, streamlined startup time and more intuitive navigation.
• Fully integrated broadband services such as WIFI/HSIA and other key hotel IP connected applications.
• Customizable entertainment delivery system and mobile app.
• Unique opportunities for hotels to market directly to their guests within their hotel rooms.
SONIFI is also making a significant investment and upgrading its broadband service, offering current and prospective customers with the opportunity to more economically bundle broadband with free-to-guest and interactive TV services.
To make bundled services more accessible to current and prospective SONIFI customers, the company plans to expand ‘Dare to Compare,’ a nationwide broadband/HSIA promotion enabling hoteliers to save up to 50% on HSIA support fees when integrated alongside ITV and FTG services.
SONIFI’s new business strategy will also benefit its customers by leveraging strategic partnerships with companies like DIRECTV, a practice it plans to expand in the coming months. The relationship with DIRECTV, announced earlier this year, offers customers unparalleled programming, marketing and technology options, while providing affordable financing to facilitate HDTV upgrades with little or no upfront out-of-pocket capital expense.
“We have listened to our customers and we are changing the way we do business,” said Michael Ribero, Chief Executive Officer, SONIFI. “The rebranding of LodgeNet to SONIFI marks a new beginning, one that will see new market-driven products and services, developed in partnership with our customers, that will help increase the profitability and customer satisfaction of those we serve.”
SONIFI’s new direction represents a broader commitment to the hospitality industry. The company is working closely with hospitality brands to further refine its solutions and establish a product development strategy driven by industry insights. To keep the company closer to its customers, SONIFI has created an advisory board consisting of thought leaders from the senior management of top brands and ownership groups across North America. The advisory board is holding its first meeting at HITEC, and will be working in the months to come as the company unveils new solutions and collaborative research initiatives.
SONIFI’s commitment to the hospitality industry is also reflected in the collective experience of its new leadership team. Mr. Ribero created the HHonors loyalty program and spent years on Hilton’s executive team. while SONIFI’s President, Thomas W. Storey, is an industry veteran, having previously served in key leadership positions at Fairmont, Carlson, and Marriott Hotels.
“Our new senior leadership team has walked in the hotelier’s shoes,” said Mr. Storey. “We understand the challenges and are committed to developing more advanced solutions in partnership with our customers. Over the past month, we have met with senior leaders from the top hotel companies; listening to their needs and concerns. We are talking – but more importantly, we are listening – to hotel owners and operators to ensure we provide the content and connectivity solutions that will help them meet the rapidly changing needs of their guests. At SONIFI, we are leveraging the 30 years of commercial-grade product development experience, and a 1.4 million-room base, with a renewed focus on the benefits we can provide to hoteliers.”
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