Global growth

Hop wins hotel software deal with Bannatyne

Hop co-founders Richard Drummond (left) and Jon Erasmus

A Scottish tech firm has broken into North American and African markets after cementing a deal with the leisure group founded by former TV ‘dragon’, Duncan Bannatyne.

Hop, a hotel property management software company, was the 2017 brainchild of highlands-based hoteliers, Richard Drummond and Jon Erasmus and developer, Ronald Tweedie.

The trio developed Hop out of frustration at what they deemed to be expensive, outdated systems, creating single-point software which could handle everything including bookings, multi-system payments, orders and check-ins.

Now, after penning a contract with five English hotels in the Bannatyne leisure portfolio, the company is celebrating new business in Florida and Nigeria, with a deal also closed in Barbados.

Hop, which will attend the ScotHot hospitality showcase at SEC in Glasgow this month, already enjoys a significant market share in Scotland, with software operational in 65 hospitality venues.

However, recent deals which will see the firm operate across three continents, have changed the global outlook for the business, which retains strong roots in the highlands and islands and an office in Edinburgh.

“We have a good presence and foundation in Scotland. This is probably because we have over 40 years of experience running our own hotels here,” said co-founder, Mr Drummond, who also runs McKays Hotel, Restaurant and Bar in Pitlochry.

“That gives us a ground-up, daily insight into the Scottish and UK sector and we are keen to continually build on that, with the knowledge we have.”

Hop’s Florida tie-up sees the firm provide solutions for Skyborne Aviation, which operates a 314-room campus hotel as part of an airline training academy at Vero Beach.

The company is also providing systems for CheckInn, which is a multi-property organisation, in Nigeria.

Another partnership with a holiday complex in Barbados in the Caribbean is due to go live within weeks. 

Hop’s Scottish clients include the J & R Group, the Isles Hotel Group and the Cobbs group in the highlands and islands.

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