Hilton International Partners with Sapient

Sapient (NASDAQ: SAPE), the business and technology consultancy, announced that Hilton International, the 400-strong hotels division of UK-based Hilton Group plc, has selected Sapient to assist in the design, development and implementation of a technology initiative that will enable the business to offer its largest source markets for the Hilton brand - UK, Germany and Japan - online services in local languages.  Sapient will also develop the online services, for the Hilton-owned Scandic brand, in the local languages and in English, for Norway, Denmark, Finland and Sweden.  Sapient will be implementing the underlying content management system for the sites of both brands.  Hilton International has also awarded Sapient the support contract to manage its e-commerce applications.

The sites will offer content in the local language and with local relevance, at each stage of the research, selection and reservation process for all Hilton and Scandic properties around the world.  Hilton is the first global hotel operator to offer multiple sites that allow customers to book local and international Hilton hotels in their own language. For example, a Japanese customer will be able to research and book a UK Hilton hotel room in Japanese.

Developing its online sales channel and generating greater income through the Internet are key business objectives for Hilton International.  The hotel group partnered with Sapient for the consultancy`s ability to rapidly design and deploy systems, on time and on budget. Sapient`s focus on achieving measurable business results, and ensuring the technology solutions it deploys are adopted by end-users, were also factors in Hilton International`s decision.
Sapient implemented the underlying content management system, which enables the multi-language functionality.  The content management system allows Hilton International to create and update content for each web site from a single point of data entry. 
“The Internet is a great tool for global distribution.  However, our aim is now to tailor that distribution method to suit our individual customers. The depth and relevance of the content available on these new web sites will be unrivalled in the hotel industry,” said Hilton International Senior Vice President of Distribution and E-Commerce Tim Davis. “Our recently unveiled e-commerce strategy will enable us to reduce our distribution costs, while maintaining our brand value around the globe. An overriding objective is that the Hilton and Scandic brand web sites become the preferred booking method for our customers.”
Bill Kanarick, vice president of travel and transportation at Sapient, said, “By partnering with Sapient, Hilton International is assured that the implementation of its e-commerce strategy will be delivered on time and on budget. Sapient was the only consultancy that could demonstrate to Hilton International its ability to develop and implement a content management system that could feed the eight individual sites from a single data entry point.”

The launch of the new service begins with the UK site (www.hilton.co.uk) in June 2003, followed by the German site (www.hilton.de) in July and the Japanese site (www.hilton.co.jp) in October. The Scandic brand sites will also be launched in October in Finland, Sweden, Norway and Denmark. 

Hilton International has also awarded Sapient the support contract to manage its e-commerce applications, leveraging Sapient`s operations in New Delhi, India.  Through Sapient Application Management Services, Hilton will benefit significantly from lower cost of operations, while ensuring that its applications are maintained, optimised and evolved to meet current and future needs.


About Sapient - Sapient, a leading business and technology consultancy, helps Global 2000 clients achieve measurable business results through the rapid application and support of advanced technology on a fixed-price basis.  Founded in 1991, Sapient employs approximately 1,500 people in offices in Atlanta, Cambridge (Mass.), Chicago, Düsseldorf, London, Los Angeles, Milan, Munich, New Delhi, New York, San Francisco, Toronto and Washington, D.C.  More information about Sapient can be found at www.sapient.com.  Sapient is a registered service mark of Sapient Corporation.
About Hilton International -
Hilton International (HI), an operating division of the UK based Hilton Group plc, owns the rights to the Hilton brand name throughout the world, with the exception of North America. HI operates over 400 hotels, with some 250 branded Hilton, over 150 under the mid-market Scandic brand plus 15 luxury Conrad hotels, under a joint venture agreement with Hilton Hotels Corporation (HHC). Hilton International employs over 65,000 staff in over 70 countries. A global marketing alliance between Hilton International and the North American-based Hilton Hotels Corporation, extends the number of hotels operated by both companies worldwide to over 2,400 - over 500 of which are branded Hilton.