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AUSTIN, TEXAS USA (June 26, 2015) – On Monday, June 15, 2015, as part of the 2015 Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition and Conference (HITEC), Entrepreneur 20X named its first winner — Whistle. Produced by Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®), along with Somers Communications, Entrepreneur 20X became the first hospitality startup pitch competition to be included in the HITEC schedule. Nine startups competed for the top prize and recognition as the most industry disruptive hospitality technology. 

“Much of the competition ended up being standing room only which is a true testament to how innovative, thought-provoking and engaging these startups were,” explains HFTP CEO Frank Wolfe, CAE. “Whistle is a well-deserving winner and I am eager to see what products and services we will see in the future at Entrepreneur 20X.”

Whistle, a service which aggregates customer communications allowing businesses to respond or triage incoming messages via a real-time chat interface, was awarded the top prize of “Most Innovative Idea” after presenting before a panel of expert judges with backgrounds in hospitality, technology and entrepreneurship. The “Best Pitch” went to Triptease and the “Best Investment” award went to Loop & Tie.  

“The most valuable element of Entrepreneur 20x for Whistle has been the validation and exposure to industry leaders and professionals,” says Christopher Hovanessian, Co-Founder and President of Whistle. “Being the winner of the first E20X competition is definitely a very exciting accomplishment for us and it feels great! It’s an amazing feeling to find out directly from the industry experts that our hard work is recognized and paying off.”


For more information on the success of Entrepreneur 20X, please read this blog post. HFTP is planning to make Entrepreneur 20X an annual event with the next competition taking place during HITEC 2016 in New Orleans, La. June 20-23. 

About HFTP

HFTP, founded in 1952 and headquartered in Austin, Texas, USA with additional offices in Maastricht, The Netherlands, and Kowloon, Hong Kong, is the global professional association for financial and technology personnel working in hotels, clubs and other hospitality-related businesses. HFTP provides first class educational opportunities, research, and publications to members around the globe including, the premiere hospitality technology conference HITEC — founded in 1972. HFTP also awards the only hospitality specific certifications for accounting and technology — the Certified Hospitality Accountant Executive (CHAE) and the Certified Hospitality Technology Professional (CHTP) designations. HFTP was founded in the USA as the National Association of Hotel Accountants.

Contact: Danielle Earp / +1 (512) 249-5333

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