by Michael J. Shapiro | October 12, 2017
Event-management software provider Etouches unveiled its Venue Sourcing platform this week at IMEX America in Las Vegas. The launch marks the rebranding of the solution formerly known as Zentila, which Etouches acquired in June 2016; Etouches will now sell the Venue Sourcing platform to new corporate customers.
The existing Zentila site will remain live with no changes, so third-party planners and existing corporate customers can continue to use it.
Venue Sourcing, which provides access to 225,000 venues, now better integrates the sourcing and booking functionality of Zentila with meeting registration and approval, and adds an enterprise calendar as well. A new, all-in-one interface ties together all of the functionality, and simple creation of electronic requests for proposals now can be launched via the search or registration functions. Improved reporting capabilities are available for Venue Sourcing, as well.
The Etouches Venue Sourcing solution promises enhanced visibility into sourcing throughout an organization, with dashboards revealing the progress of meetings sourced at any stage of the process. Planners can see spend and negotiated savings, in real time, by brand, venue, user, team, department, division or region. Activity can be viewed by planner, including outsourced third parties and every person in the organization who has meeting-planner responsibilities. 
The added visibility likewise makes it easier for procurement professionals to ensure planners are following bidding protocol, leveraging supplier relationships and realizing maximum savings.
The company touts its Venue Sourcing as a platform that requires minimal or no additional training, meaning that more employees throughout the organization can begin using the platform -- ultimately capturing more meetings spend across the organization. Both the meetings approval process and reporting functionality are simple and straightforward, according to Etouches.
The event-tech provider also recently finalized its integration of Loopd technology -- which Etouches acquired in March of this year -- to create an end-to-end meetings solution that includes in-show behavioral data thanks to Loopd's wearable smart badge.
"In recent years, Etouches has struck a balance between strategic technology acquisitions and organic product development to build out our event-management solution, with a mission of making events and meetings better for all parties -- participants, planners and sponsors," said Shane Edmonds, CTO of Etouches. "With Venue Sourcing integrated into our comprehensive end-to-end platform, Etouches now offers an unrivaled solution that lets our customers measure and manage the entire event lifecycle."