hospitality Pioneers


Hospitality UPGRADE Award 2020

Wednesday, 7 October, 2020

Gira klein
hotelforum gross
Gastgewerbe Magazin klein

Hospitality UPGRADE AWard 2020

 Present your tech innovation to an audience of hotel experts

hotelforum, the European conference for hotel and property experts, together with the magazine Gastgewerbe, will be handing out the Hospitality UPGRADE Award for the third time, and for the first time in cooperation with GNERATOR powered by GIRA. The prize will be presented to the winner of the techno-pitch that is to be held on 7 October during the hotelforum conference.

Hospitality Upgrade Award

TIME for Disruption

Trend-setting tools and technologies which revolutionise the hotel industry

Andreas Martin, Managing Director of hotelforum management GmbH: “Together with the Gastgewereb Magazin, we have been supporting young start-ups in the last three years which use digital technologies to offer innovative solutions for the entire value chain, starting from the development of a hotel, through to its operation, and further still. I am very pleased that we will also be endorsed by a partner from the industry this year for the first time in the shape of GNERATOR powered by GIRA.”

Markus Fromm-Wittenberg, start-up ambassador for the start-up initiative GIRA GNERATOR: “The prize is aimed at start-ups that have set themselves the task of bringing forward innovative solutions in the hospitality sector, which for instance offer digitalisation to optimise processes or the establishment of new client experiences, or even entirely new approaches for this industry. There are no creative boundaries; this is about incremental but also disruptive approaches. This is the only way for industries to grow beyond their own limits. We at GNERATOR are committed to ensuring that established industries form a sustainable symbiosis with start-ups in order to develop new innovative solutions for the benefit of customers. We will happily support the winning start-up with our extensive network and our experience, and will stand beside them as mentors going forward.”

Apply now until 10 September 2020

We are looking for tech start-ups from the European area that use their digital solutions, tools and systems, as well as new future-orientated business models, to revolutionise and sustainably improve the following hotel sectors: processes and performance in operational hotel management, guest experience for hotel guests before, during and after their stay in the hotel, as well as processes, products and services of the property, energy and construction sectors that are relevant for hotel projects and hotel operations.

Hotel management

Processes and performance in operational hotel management

Guest experience

Guest experience for hotel guests before, during and after their stay in the hotel

Property, energy & construction sector

Processes, products and services

Terms & Conditions
of Participation

Start-ups are eligible to participate that have an innovative digital product for the hospitality industry, were established within the last five years, and can present a scalable business model. Applications can be made here. Deadline is 10 September 2020.

An advisory board made up of experts in the areas of hotel development and operation, specialist planners, financing, research, IT and media will nominate five start-ups among all the applications submitted which will compete with one another in the techno-pitch during the hotelforum conference held on 7 October.

Gain access to a network of
hospitality experts

The winner of the Hospitality UPGRADE Award 2020, which will be chosen by an expert jury made up of several people, will receive a fellowship with mentoring and network access in the GIRA GNERATOR, exhibitor space at hotelforum 2021, as well as a one-year Young Professional membership of the “Arbeitskreis Hotelimmobilien” (Hotel Properties Working Group) 2021.


Who were the winners of the previous years?

How long does the pitch last?

You have 4 minutes to present your product idea to our expert jury. Afterwards you will be interviewed by the jury for 3 minutes. 

Which documents have to be submitted?

For the application you have to

fill in a form for a short company profile
upload  a pitch deck with information about the company, founding year, team, product, market, busines model and USP (max 12 slides, PPT or PDF)
send a company logo (jpeg and api or eps file) 
hand in a meaningful sentence for the presentation in all our communication channels

How are the finalists selected?

A top-class board of trustees with experts from all areas of the hospitality market will review your pitch deck and nominate the finalists.

Advisory Board:
Our network for your growth

In the next few days we will publish our advisory board and network partners. All incoming applications for the Hospitality UPGRADE Award will be reviewed and evaluated by experts in the area of hotel development and operation, specialist planners, financing, research, IT and media. Depending on the character of the nominated finalists, the jury is selected from members of the advisory board.

Conference programme

The heart of the approximately 5-hour programme will be a festive live stage in the hotelforum studio in Munich with limited audience. The programme will be broadcasted to the virtual conference attendees via live streaming.  

Wednesday, 7 October 2020

(programme subject to change)

12.30 - 13.00: Networking
13.00 - 13.10: Welcome
13.10 - 13.30: Keynote
13.30 - 14.15: 3 Showcases
14.15 - 14.35: Networking
14.35 - 15.35: Techno-Pitch
15.35 - 15.55: Networking
15.55 - 16.40: Panel discussion
16.40 - 17.05: Hospitality UPGRADE Award 2020
17.05 - 18.00: Hotelimmobilie des Jahres 2020

About hotelforum

hotelforum is the European Hotel Development Conference, which for 18 years now has been a regular annual feature accommodating networking and exchanges between experts when it comes to hotel properties. hotelforum will continue to offer a highly-qualified communication platform even as a virtual conference with a live stage, and will consist of a varied stage programme, breakout sessions, opportunities for exhibitors, and various networking formats for the hospitality industry. It will culminate in the presentation of the “Hotel Property Award”. 2020’s event will be held on Wednesday, 7 October. You will find more information here.

Application form for start-ups

Klicke oder ziehe eine Datei in diesen Bereich zum Hochladen.


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