AI-Powered Sustainability Tool Aims to Transform How Hotel Brands Manage their Green Initiatives
By automating manual processes, reducing double-accounting, and streamlining the transmission of sustainability data across hospitality and travel brands, certification entities, and distributors, BeCause contributes to revenue growth.
Recently, AI startup BeCause announced a significant investment to help the company expand its commercial and product development offers. The company provides an AI-powered sustainability hub that simplifies, speeds up and reduces costs for sustainability management in the tourism industry. The company estimates that by eliminating 60% of the resources previously used for repetitive, error-prone manual administrative tasks, BeCause enables stakeholders to stay up to date with the latest sustainability improvements, resulting in a sixfold faster return on sustainability investments. To learn more about this company and its product, HT spoke with Frederik Steensgaard, CEO and Co-founder of BeCause.
Where did the idea for this business come from?
Despite the widespread interest in sustainability, facilitating reliable communication between travelers, travel companies and certification entities remains a significant challenge. BeCause was established with a vision to transform the way travel and tourism brands manage their sustainability initiatives and provide more sustainable options for travelers.
I grew up in different parts of this beautiful planet and have a passion for travelling. So, it’s been painful for me and co-founder, Jonas, to see what climate change is doing to the world. It frustrates us how sustainability is a massive and growing headache for companies to manage, holding them back, costing them fortunes, and preventing the connection between supply and demand for sustainable solutions. In response to these concerns, Jonas and I founded BeCause with a mission to create an IT infrastructure that connects sustainability ecosystems and enables the tourism and travel industry to make a positive impact on the environment. We are determined to make sustainability a no-brainer in tourism and recognize that the industry could serve as a catalyst for change by bringing people together, tangibly experiencing the environmental and social changes to our world and fostering sustainable actions & habits which can snowball – hereafter also from tourism into other parts of people’s lives.
So, we built a platform that now helps some of the world's leading travel & tourism companies improve their bottom line, while making a positive, real-world impact. These companies can integrate sustainability seamlessly into their business operations by using the necessary tools and resources offered by us to manage sustainability data efficiently and leverage it to create competitive advantages.
How does the technology work?
The BeCause technology framework modernizes the way travel & hospitality providers, distributors, and certification entities collaborate, resulting in accurate and reliable sustainability data for over 11,000 hotels and OTAs (Online Travel Agencies). By replacing outdated processes like spreadsheets and unconnected systems, BeCause streamlines and transforms the management of sustainability data, ensuring compliance and driving competitive advantage.
Utilizing mapping algorithms, data sharing infrastructure, workflow automations, and AI tools, BeCause simplifies the collection of complex data from multiple sources. This data is then synthesized and utilized efficiently across various operations, minimizing human effort while maximizing compliance.
Through the BeCause platform, companies can eliminate up to 60% of the resources previously allocated to repetitive and error-prone manual administrative tasks. This reduction in resource utilization translates into a significant positive impact on the environment, society, and overall profitability.
Why should hotels be interested in using it?
Sustainability can be a real competitive advantage for hotels, but reliably and efficiently communicating their eco-friendly credentials to potential guests is a persistent challenge. The opportunity in terms of occupancy and room revenue is tremendous – Booking.com research indicates that 78% of global travelers plan on staying in a sustainable property at least once this year, while 57% would feel better about staying in a specific accommodation if it had a sustainable certification. Other studies find that travelers are four times more likely to book eco-labeled hotels. On the expense side of the ledger, ineffective sustainability management is costing hotel and travel brands over $8 billion each year, in addition to missed revenues of at least $13 billion annually based on our industry estimates.
BeCause offers hotels and travel companies a solution to eliminate redundancies in sustainability data collection and reporting. By automating manual processes, reducing double-accounting, and streamlining the transmission of sustainability data across hospitality and travel brands, certification entities, and distributors, BeCause creates efficiencies that not only contribute to revenue growth but also have a positive ecological impact.
While many companies still rely on labor-intensive manual processes and spreadsheets, our AI-powered platform provides a centralized and automated solution for managing sustainability. Hotels and other travel companies can efficiently collect, coordinate, and communicate sustainability data in one place, resulting in cost savings and tangible impacts on the planet, people, and profits.
With BeCause, hotel users can seamlessly gather complex information from multiple sources, leverage mapping algorithms to transform & analyze the data, and effortlessly put that data to work wherever, whenever, and how however it is needed across all channels, stakeholder formats, and workflows such as ecolabel certification. All with maximum compliance and minimal human effort. Additionally, our AI assistant utilizes an extensive database to provide tailored predictions and recommendations to sustainability managers, offering a unique level of insight and support not found in any other solution.
What are some real-life use cases for how hotels are using it now?
Let’s take an example of the current manual processes hotels must undergo to manage their sustainability data. The sustainability manager from a major hotel chain, must get all 1,000 properties in his hotel group to collect updated, valid sustainability metrics, get recertified by Green Key, then share that data both upwards to corporate stakeholders and outwards to Booking.com and hundreds of other OTAs and distribution channels. If he’s not working with BeCause, then the manager does all of this via spreadsheets, emails, and unconnected niche systems. The same applies to his counterparts at Green Key and Booking.com, both of whom need to handle millions of individual hotels working with the same wildly inefficient tools. The result is that hotels that actually are embracing sustainable practices in a substantive way wouldn't appear that way to travelers browsing an OTA until many months later. Naturally, this is bad for business.
BeCause allows all of these sustainability professionals to add their data ONCE, and then without further effort repurpose it across overlapping workflows. This streamlines compliance, certification, and reporting standards, eliminates double work, and reduces human errors. Most importantly, it speeds up the process for everyone involved, letting sustainability data flow freely from hotel to certification entity to distributor - and ultimately to the end user, the traveler.