The group is outfitting itself with a new commercial weapon that will have the dual function of a loyalty and travel program in a context where the American group, which has been victim of a massive cyber attack, is seeking to reassure its clientele.
On February 13th will be the launch of the Marriott Bonvoy, the new loyalty brand that will replace the group's current loyalty brands: Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG).
To reach this stage, the American group has embarked upon a real fighter's path initiated more than two years ago.
2016: acquisition of the world's 7th largest group, Starwood Hotels and Resorts
After its acquisition of Starwood in 2016, which made Marriott the world's largest hotel group, its teams began working to bring the various loyalty programs closer together. The work promises to be colossal since Starwood has a network of nearly 350,000 rooms distributed among 1,207 properties - according to Hospitality ON global ranking of groups as of January 1, 2015.
August 2018: Marriott succeeds in unifying its loyalty programs
For the first time since Marriott acquired Starwood in 2016, the programs now operate under a single unified benefit package and a single label covering the entire loyalty portfolio of 29 brands and more than 6,700 participating hotels.
The new programs come with a range of credit card options. In 2018, Marriott and its U.S. credit card partners JPMorgan Chase and American Express will propose co-branded credit cards that offer cardholder members more advantages over the entire portfolio.
November 2018 : The group reveals that it is the victim of a massive cyber attack
Marriott announces that following an alert from an internal security tool received on September 8, 2018, it is aware of being the victim of a hacking of information concerning approximately 500 million customers.
Information from databases including passport numbers, check-in dates and check-out dates of Starwood customers, among others.
Arne Sorenson, President and CEO of Marriott said: "We are working hard to provide answers to our customers regarding their personal data, with a dedicated website and call centre. ... we are dedicating the necessary resources to phase out the Starwood program and accelerate the improvement of our network security."
February 2019: launch of the new loyalty programme
Don't say Marriott Rewards, The Ritz-Carlton Rewards, Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG)... but now Marriott Bonvoy! The new loyalty brand will replace its other programs with a goal to ensure customer loyalty through new features.
Stephanie Linnartz, the group's global sales manager, explains: "Marriott Bonvoy is a travel program designed to bring our strong portfolio of global brands to life in 129 countries and territories, while providing members with an endless source of inspiration to continue to travel and experience their passions."
Experiences - about 120,000 - will be offered to Marriott Bonvoy members when buying or redeeming points. Among the most exotic are a trek in the desert, a hike in glacial Patagonia or a cooking lesson with great French chefs.
Its members will also be able to participate in events taking place at the 02 in London and at the Mercedes Benz Arena in Berlin where Marriott has suites at each site.
Next month, the American group will launch Marriott Bonvoy after two years of work representing the culmination of the hotel industry's largest merger of loyalty programs.
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