Update: Ok, they got me. I read waaaaayyy too much into the photo of a happy passenger flying. It’s registration for Hyatt’s new promotion which starts tomorrow. Heh.
Hyatt tweeted that they’ll be making a Gold Passport announcement tomorrow.
And the accompanying picture is of a happy passenger sitting in an airline seat. The suggestion seems to be that Hyatt is about to improve the airline experience.
Could we see a deal between Hyatt and American? The man in charge at Hyatt used to work for American, after all.
I actually don’t think so.
- Timing. Hyatt doesn’t seem like it moves quickly. The MGM M Life deal took two years to come about. There were lots of things supposedly in the pipeline with Hyatt that we haven’t seen yet (cash and points awards, complimentary bottled water for elites).
- Unclear value proposition. I’d imagine they would want to digest and evaluate their MGM partnership before pulling the trigger on another. The numbers behind doing a deal the way that Starwood and Delta did with points-earning aren’t obviously profitable — the points are expensive, I’d be surprised if there’s evidence yet that the juice is worth the squeeze. And the head of Gold Passport is a former KPMG accountant – I’d expect continued methodical decision-making.
- Uncertainty at American. I’d be surprised to see American doing big deals given current uncertainty — they are still in bankruptcy, it is not clear if they are merging with US Airways or not. It’s only recently become clear who would run their frequent flyer program if they did merge.
I could be completely wrong about this. And the tweet sure looks like there’s an airline-related announcement coming out of Hyatt tomorrow. My bet is it’s something fairly modest.
What do you think it is?
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