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In a bid to diversify its operation, renowned ATM manufacturer NCR Corp (NCR - Analyst Report) has come up with a new hotel check-in kiosk named NCR Express Key. The new kiosk is expected to facilitate the process of hotel check-in for guests who have checked in online or through mobile, wherein they can collect their room key without having to queue at the reception.
NCR Express Key is an initiative of NCR Travel, a division of NCR that is currently focused on developing solutions to tap the potential in the travel market.
The Express Key, a part of its advanced hotel check-in solution portfolio, allows guests who have checked in online or through mobile channels to obtain room keys by scanning printed or mobile-delivered confirmation barcodes, NFC-enabled mobile devices or mobile acoustic keys. The unpretentious kiosks may be strategically placed across various locations in a hotel, providing more options to guests in case of loss or misplacement of keys.
NCR has taken the help of a research firm Opinion Research Corporation (ORC) to gauge the demand of this service. The study revealed that about 76% of the people said being able to check-in ahead of time would minimize potential frustration, while around 41% of the total population surveyed stated that they are more likely to select a hotel that has a better IT infrastructure offering web check-in or check in through mobile device.
Moreover, we remain highly positive on NCR Corp.’s ATM footprint. According to a study published by Retail Banking Research, NCR has been the world's largest supplier of multi-vendor ATM middleware and applications for 25 consecutive years. We believe that NCR Corp.’s commitment to protect the trust and integrity of the ATM channel has been inspiring banks and a host of other financial institutions to choose its services.
In February, the largest retail bank in South Africa Absa Group Limited opted for NCR Corp.’s integrated ATM solutions for overhauling its entire ATM network across South Africa over a three-year period.
We are also encouraged by the company’s association with leading banks, such as Barclays Bank plc (BCS - Snapshot Report) and UniCredit Bank, which have upgraded their ATMs with advanced NCR banking solutions.
This apart, some industry experts are of the opinion that large ATM manufacturers like NCR Corporation and Diebold, Incorporated are likely to benefit from strong momentum from different banks, as banks are focusing on better security needs and ADA compliance.
Moreover, NCR has also witnessed growth in the Latin American region. It is also expected that unit volumes in Asia are expected to improve as demand from several markets here is on a recovery.
On the other hand, NCR’s sales are affected to a certain extent by seasonality, with the first quarter bringing lower revenue and the fourth quarter generating higher revenue each year. Such seasonal nature of the business leads to fluctuation in cash flows and makes it difficult for the company to predict its working capital requirements accurately, thereby resulting in inaccurate cash projection.
The company has improved its operating performance and is managing its expenses well. Although the restructuring initiatives have started impacting results, we believe that the company should reduce its debt balance to further improve its operating performance, and must come up with new strategies to compete against Diebold Inc. (DBD - Snapshot Report).
The company has a Zacks #1 Rank, implying a short-term Strong Buy rating.