Over 25 percent of Choice Hotels International’s (NYSE:CHH) domestic franchisees, or 500 operators representing 750 hotels, are registered users of Choicebuys.com, the company’s new web-based purchasing system launched in April.
“Critical to the success of Choicebuys.com is its acceptance among its target users - our franchisees,” said Charles A. Ledsinger, Jr., president and CEO of Choice. “These early returns indicate that they clearly recognize the benefit of Choicebuys.com in terms of selection, convenience, affordability and ease of usage.”
The user-friendly Choicebuys.com, complete with detailed product descriptions, photos and itemized pricing, revolutionizes the way the franchisee owners of Comfort, Quality, Econo Lodge, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Rodeway Inn and MainStay Suites brand hotels order supplies needed to run their businesses. Through the system, franchisees are able to place orders with endorsed vendors, pay for purchases and track delivery via the Internet.
According to Brad Douglas, vice president of strategic partnerships, 37 vendors - companies such as American Hotel Register, EcoLab, Serta, Thomasville and USA TODAY—have created electronic catalogs offering nearly 3,000 products through Choicebuys.com. “Our objective is to add at least 5,000 additional products to the site by the end of the year,” said Douglas.
Nick Miller, general manager of the Sleep Inn in San Antonio, Texas, calls Choicebuys.com “a great and easy way to find the products I need to run my hotel. All you have to do is type in the product you’re looking for and the system finds it for you - no phone calls or faxes needed,” he said.
According to Douglas, by virtue of its ease of usage and its preferred pricing, the system may potentially drive annual expenditures of $1.5 billion in goods and services by Choice franchisees. “Our objective in the development of Choicebuys.com was to provide franchisees with a system that is both cost effective and easy to use,” said Douglas.
Choice Hotels International is the second largest hotel franchisor in the world, with almost 5,000 hotels open and under development in 36 countries. Choice’s brands include Comfort, Quality, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn and MainStay Suites.
Comfort, Quality, Clarion, Sleep Inn, Econo Lodge, Rodeway Inn and MainStay Suites are registered trademarks and service marks of Choice Hotels International.