Uniguest Acquires Tripleplay, On Heels of ONELAN Acquisition

September 19, 2019 by Dave Haynes

Well this is interesting … Nashville-based hotel services provider Uniguest has acquired UK-based Tripleplay, just 15 months after acquiring a different UK company, ONELAN, which shares some of the same software capabilities.

The result, says Uniguest, is “the world’s largest IPTV, digital signage, and room booking solutions provider.”

Tripleplay does digital signage, like ONELAN, but much of its business has more to do with IPTV and video streaming solutions, with hotels one of its markets.

Merging Tripleplay into the Uniguest portfolio, says a PR announcement this morning, “provides mutual access to technology, expertise, and partners as the digital signage industry continues to undergo a period of consolidation amongst providers.”

As part of Uniguest, this new division will be a key component of a global organisation that enables Tripleplay and ONELAN to leverage the group’s financial and support infrastructure to drive significant global expansion and service plans.

With ever-increasing demands to deliver live TV and video as part of a digital signage solution across key verticals, combining the respective strengths of the two organisations ensures customers can confidently access the best-in-class IPTV and digital signage as a complete solution from a single global organisation to meet their customers’ specific requirements.

The newly formed group of Tripleplay and ONELAN shares a common customer-centric approach, are culturally complementary, and will be able to exploit the significant levels of technical skills, sales, research, marketing, and product sets from both organisations, thereby benefiting clients and partners globally.

The acquisition presents the strategic opportunity for Uniguest to market Tripleplay’s award-winning IPTV and interactive portal to its own hospitality and senior living clients, while extending its reach with a complementary partner base for products; specifically, in the stadium, large enterprise, and banking verticals.

The combined Tripleplay and ONELAN organisation will be led by Steve Rickless, Tripleplay’s CEO, with the support of the Tripleplay and ONELAN executive teams. Tripleplay and ONELAN will continue to operate from their respective offices with their current team members.

“This acquisition is a game changer for Tripleplay and will bring significant advantages to our valued customers and partners,” Rickless says. “Our market-leading solutions combined with the ONELAN product set will be one of the most powerful combinations available in today’s market, and the partnership will allow us to deliver innovation and enhanced service. Backed by the strength of Uniguest, this gives us the opportunity to deliver our aggressive strategic vision for the business.”

Here’s a podcast with Rickless …

Hugh Coghill-Smith, ONELAN CCO: “As our clients’ needs continue to expand, we are very excited to combine the Tripleplay and ONELAN solutions to provide additional value.  This presents a considerable opportunity for our customers, partners, and employees.”

And here’s one with Hugh …

“With the successful acquisition and integration of the ONELAN business into our portfolio in 2018, we reviewed a number of providers who could offer complementary solutions which aligned with our core strategy to deliver digital engagement to the industries we operate in,” says Jeff Hiscox, Uniguest CEO. “Tripleplay was by far the best solution in the market and fit this profile perfectly; we’re delighted to bring them under the Uniguest umbrella. By pairing Tripleplay with ONELAN, we are creating a powerhouse for the AV industry and are excited to start this journey.”

This makes a lot of sense to me. Uniguest has a long history in the hotel industry of providing and managing services like business centers and guest workstations, where people can do things like print airline boarding passes. I know from talking to them a few years back, and visiting their Nashville offices, that they were being asked by hospitality clients about providing other services, like digital signage.

It had a very basic signage offer, but not something that was going to get big hotel customers excited. That presumably led to acquiring ONELAN, which has a long history and very solid products.

TriplePlay is theoretically a rival option for signage, but the company has long been into other capabilities that hospitality clients also need, like in-room TV solutions. I’ve seen demos at InfoComm and elsewhere, and been impressed.

So as Uniguest asserts, it can now go to hotels, senior living communities and all kinds of related verticals and say it has IPTV, digital signage, and room booking solutions , as well as a NOC to service it all, and experienced sales around the globe via ONELAN and TriplePlay.

It’s a compelling argument versus companies that just do one thing in the vertical, like signage or directory systems or in-room TV.

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