The Pub Innovation parlay took place yesterday in the Amora Riverwalk Hotel, presenting ‘What’s next for your business? to innovatory publicans in attendance.

The event was a follow-on of the successful Pub Evolution meet in Bendigo earlier this year – both organised and hosted by the Australian Hotels Association Victoria (AHA Vic).

Yesterday’s round focused on the future, with guest speakers looking to the core topics of innovation, the ‘crystal ball approach’, and industry trends in foodservice, beverage, technology, banking and social media.

Paul Stocks & Kimberley Malcolm
Paul Stocks & Kimberley Malcolm

After an overture by AHA Vic’s deputy CEO Paddy O’Sullivan and member services manager Kimberley Malcolm, seven informative talks and panels involving ten guests enraptured over 200 attendees in the Hotel’s events centre.

First up was CUB’s Ash Watson, discussing how licensees will interact with customers in the future, followed by Doshii’s David Engel, who discussed the changes taking place in payment systems.

Next was a panel of chefs, featuring Adam D’Sylva, Shane Delia and Ashly Hicks, with insights into food trends, then Nightlife’s David O’Rourke, talking about the “impact” of music.

Hotels and Hashtags_chefs_adj_crp_featureLocal Measure’s Jonathan Barouch explained how social media can drive unique customer experiences, and Chris Elliot of Mandoe Media took this further with his dialogue on Digital Engagement Solutions.

The sessions concluded with Sand Hill Rd’s Matt Mullins and Ruth Langley providing feedback on ‘People Powering’ a pub, as seen in the group’s success with their latest venture, the ground-breaking Garden State Hotel.

Host Kimberley Malcolm told PubTIC the ‘Hotels & Hashtags’ initiative was primarily about sharing knowledge on what does – and will – work for publicans.

“The afternoon focussed on innovation in the pub, with each guest speaker encouraging the audience to think about how they are innovating in their business,” said Malcolm.

“It can be a big decision to take some time out of the business to work on the business, and those who met that challenge left with inspiration to try something new … or perhaps relief that they are on the right track!”

This event series by AHA Vic complements the Association’s Licensee Super Forum, which took place in May of this year, brainstorming ways to further the southern capital’s successes in hospitality.

Hotels and Hashtags_David Clancey. Matt Mullins. Andy Bower_adj_crp
L-R: David Clancey, Bargo Events; Matt Mullins, Sand Hill Rd; Andy Bower, CUB
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