Major Nitesh Kala
Associate Vice President & Head – Facilities & Corporate Services Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd
Nitesh Kala is an Ex Short Service Commissioned Indian Army officer from the 24th Battalion of the RAJPUT Regiment currently working as Head – Facilities & Corporate Services at Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd. in Mumbai with overall 17 plus years of combined Army & Corporate experience in heading the Facilities & Corporate Services function.
His strength lies in improving office systems through technology and automation and building a top-performing ‘Facilities & Corporate Services’ team. He has much to offer when it comes to the diversity of experience and profession. He has worked in six major industries in India: Defense, Hospitals, Real Estate, Education, Pharmaceuticals, Consumer Products and currently Media & Entertainment. He is also an avid and voracious reader who loves to travel and explore the world and enjoys playing racquet games.
Thoughts on the industry –
1. Which are the major existing and upcoming MICE Destinations in India and Globally?
In India, the major existing MICE destinations are New Delhi, Goa, Jaipur, Mumbai, and Agra. The upcoming ones are Cochin, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Chennai & Bhubaneswar.
Globally the existing MICE destinations are Shanghai, Sydney, Tokyo, Singapore, and Dubai. The upcoming ones are Malaysia, Hong Kong, Macau, Auckland, and South Korea.
2.How are Millennials changing the landscape of MICE?
Millennials, a generation armed with higher education, better jobs, stronger income and an explosion of cheaper worldwide travel options are changing the landscape in the travel industry. Based on a GfK study on Asian Millennial travelers (AMTs) in six countries Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, China, Japan, and Australia. 61% of AMTs said they want a customizable experience when sight-seeing, compared to only 38% who prefer a packaged or group-led tour. 80% said they want to visit somewhere they have not visited before, while 77% say they would choose destinations where they can do new activities and gain new experiences.
3.How can corporates optimize their MICE expenditure?
All optimization starts by analyzing expenditure. Transparent processing of your MICE bookings via specific online solution bundles a variety of offers and enables you to compare them. Statistics on the conference spending are available in real time at any time.
Cost-cutting through structured hotel acquisitions and guiding MICE bookings in a targeted manner to the contract hotels defined by the procurement department. This cuts costs and bundles volumes. Booked hotel volumes form the basis on which the procurement department can negotiate new and cheaper contract rate. As a result, the procurement team can manage the cost ranges and rights of individual employees and departments easily and individually. This also requires good planning and coordination between the travel and procurement teams, if both of them are in sync and work together then a lot of cost optimization is possible.
4. What are the current and upcoming technologies that would make MICE travel easier and efficient?
Any business or industry that doesn’t make the most of technology to provide the most efficient and easy service risks becoming obsolete.
Technology will be implemented in the MICE sector in plenty of ways, and it already is being used to great effect. Companies within this industry are taking great interest in investing in apps, for example, and others are looking at more adventurous forms of technology
Some examples of major technology trends to watch for in the coming years are: –
1. Data analytics will enhance the attendee experience and will greatly improve events.
2. Software integration tools may become the answer to a beginning-to-end event planning software solution.
3. Artificial Intelligence is speeding up the processes, enabling automation, improving the performance of the tools and systems, optimizing results, and decreasing costs. The acceptance of AI technologies is also turning out to be a catalyst.
4.Internet of Things (IoT): IoT has a lot of potentials to shape the future of the travel and tourism industry, and companies have started to realize that.
5. Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are starting to make headway at events.
6.Gamification: The huge success of Pokémon Go (a mobile augmented reality game) will likely make its way in some form into event gamification.
7. To gauge attendees’ moods, demographics, and engagement, technologies like facial recognition, sentiment analysis, and biometrics will be used.