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October 18, 2017

IBM to present at Caribbean State of the Tourism Industry Conference


The American multinational technology company IBM will present at the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO)’s State of the Tourism Industry Conference (SOTIC) which opens in Grenada next week.

IBM’s global industry leader responsible for hospitality and travel related services, Greg Land, will be part of a panel which explores ways in which the Caribbean can use technology creatively to enhance the visitor experience and successfully sell destinations.

As part of his presentation Mr. Land will focus on Watson, IBM’s artificial intelligence (AI) platform, and how Caribbean destinations and businesses can utilise AI in decision making and to engage visitors.

The session, entitled, Active Engagement: Riding the Technological Wave, will also include presentations by Amrita Gurney, the head of marketing at CrowdRiff, a Canadian visual marketing platform used by tourism brands, and Oliver Gale, the founder of Bitt, a Barbados-based financial company that uses blockchain technology for online money transfers using any form of currency.

This session runs from 9:00 a.m. to 10:15 a.m. on Friday 13 October, the final day of the conference, which will have Super Bowl winner Dorsey Levin as the keynote speaker.

“I will focus on rapid rebound and will also touch on how to take control of life without excuses and how to navigate successfully through stressful situations and keep moving forward. I would like nothing more than to motivate and inspire delegates to get back on track after the damage caused by the hurricanes,” Levens said.
The conference has as its theme, Supercharging the Brand: Meeting the Needs of the New Explorers, and in the wake of the catastrophic impact of Hurricanes Irma and Maria on some member countries, the CTO is adding a special session to the SOTIC programme that will focus on how to recover and rebuild after a major disaster.

The four-hour session on Thursday 12 October is designed to explore and examine the issues and key recommendations to be considered as the Caribbean rebuilds after the monstrous category five storms, in particular, or other natural disasters it might face in the future.

It will focus on the economic cost of the disasters, including potential impact on gross domestic product, employment, the cost to rebuild and recovery time.

The State of the Tourism Industry Conference is being organised by the CTO in collaboration with the Grenada Tourism Authority and Grenada’s ministry of tourism, and will be held from 10-13 October at the Radisson Grenada Beach Resort. The conference will be preceded by business meetings on 9 and 10 October.

Other key conference sessions include Infusing Dynamism in Caribbean Tourism, Who are the New Explorers, Business Models that Rock, Turning Our Waters Into Goldmines – Investing in the Blue Economy, and Spicing Up the Caribbean Brand.

The highly anticipated tourism youth congress and a Stakeholders Speak Out session are also part of the program.

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