Founder Spotlight: Reginald Go of Cocotel, Empowering Small and Independent Hotel Owners
By Ysa Lauta
The hospitality industry contributes a lot to the growth of the economy of the Philippines. Local and international tourists visit different parts of the country especially beaches. However, looking for budget-friendly accommodation with proper facilities in these areas might be difficult. This is where Reginald Go, founder of Cocotel, realized that accommodation providers in these areas have a lot of room to improve. TechShake spoke with Reginald and how Cocotel develops these hotels’ operations and facilities for a better hotel experience.
Setting the standards
Reginald has been in the hospitality industry for more than ten years. He has been working for big continental hotels in and outside the country when he realized that it was time for him to be independent and start his own venture. “I came up with this venture because I felt like there is a need to help small and independent owners. It started when I go on holiday trips in the country, and I see the conditions of the resorts and hotels. They are not standardized, there is no help from hotel operators, no proper branding and marketing, and no one who handles their operations well.”
Cocotel is a tech-hotel brand and aggregator that makes the process easier for independently owned, small business owners of hotels and resorts in getaway destinations. They offer services like top quality makeover, financial support, reservation and revenue management, and digital and sales marketing. In this way they minimize costs from travel agencies and maximize profits for hotel operators and owners.
“We are using technology to disrupt the hotel industry,” Reginald told us. Ever since their launch earlier this year, they have already 38 partners in different getaway destinations in the country like Boracay, Siargao, Cebu, Batangas, Iloilo, Zamboanga, Palawan, Subic, and La Union.
Cocotel started from scratch with just the three founders doing all the work. They were also faced with challenges like convincing the hotel owners and locals to partner with Cocotel, looking for funding and investments, and developing their operations. But despite these, they have expanded to 25 people on their team and they are continuously improving and developing their system and standards. In addition, they have won just recently a one-million peso investment prize from IdeaSpace which is a boost in their whole operations.
Reginald shared with us that what keeps him going is their team and his passion in helping the hospitality industry of the country. For 2020, he told us that Cocotel is looking for investments and more partner hotels. He added that they are also looking into the possibility of expanding to other Southeast Asia countries like Vietnam.
Click here to know more about Cocotel.