SAS Europe 2016 interviews: Severine Obertelli, Maxxton

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SAN: "Severine, we're here at Serviced Apartment Summit which is being co-located this year with the first Short Term Rentalz conference. From a suppliers' perspective, what do you see are the main synergies between the two industries, both for working together and for product development from companies such as yourselves?"

SO: "Yes, it's a great,great idea, I think, to have organised a short term rentals conference nearby such a successful event as Serviced Apartment Summit; there are great opportunities for serviced apartment providers which can be explored in terms of partnership and in terms of revenue streams that can be coming from the leisure sector. I mean, we, as Maxxton, are specialised and always working in the leisure sector. We are one of the leaders improvising software for the industry for the last 18 years, so we are very well positioned to actually facilitate and enable serviced apartment providers to actually grab these opportunities. And that's what I find really exciting - the educational part and the fact that we are able to help  deliver real value, and help operators to find new revenue streams."

SAN: "Are you seeing your clients  starting to work together? Are some of your serviced apartment clients, are they getting more involved in the short term rental space?"

SO: "Yes, very much so, I mean our main aspect being the fact that we offer connectivity to all the major leisure channels, so for example HomeAway but also Airbnb with direct online booking as well with FlipKey, with the TripAdvisor Group, so all the major leisure channels which sometimes serviced apartments  haven't so far been able to actually explore because it can be very labour intensive to manage. Once you have the right technology, actually to be able to automate that then it becomes really appealing. And also on another side as well,  I think there could be quite a few opportunities in terms of  partnership and sharing inventory. Our technology with its great connectivity can facilitiate the opportunity of automating inventory control or inventory exchange."

SAN: "How are the serviced apartment companies using short term rental platforms? Is it to fill gaps in their short term inventory, so they might put two or three nights here or there as gaps appear alongside their long stay clients? Is that how it works?"

SO: "Yes, it's really to increase occupancy. It's great to have long term contracts but sometimes you can have gaps, of course, in between you can have empty accommodation even if actually you have a long term contract, and with channels you can possibly take advantage and come away with Airbnb. Also of course, it can increase revenue simply because although corporate contracts are very safe, and they give regular income, they don't necessarily maximise the revenue that you actually have from your apartments. So, you have two main aspects from this point of view."

ENDS     ( Duration 3:45minutes)

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