Monaker Group, Inc. is a technology-driven travel company delivering innovation to the alternative lodging rental (ALR) market. Our proprietary Monaker Booking Engine (MBE) provides access to more than 3 million instantly bookable vacation rental homes, villas, chalets, apartments, condos, resort residences, and castles. MBE offers a true B2B travel solution whereby our global distributor and agency partners can access a customizable platform for alternative lodging that allows instant property search and booking alongside their air, car and all other travel services.
Message from the CEO
Welcome to the Monaker Group, a Company committed to building innovative technology platforms and unique product sets for the travel marketplace. We are excited about our current focus and initiatives and believe we are well positioned to take advantage of the current major uptrend in Alternative Lodging and Travel. We are extremely proud of our company’s leading-edge B2B white-label solution Booking Platform and significant instantly-bookable vacation rental inventory, and invite you to learn more about how we are making travel easy.
Sincerely, Bill Kerby
Board of Directors & Management
Our Board of Directors has deep experience in travel and technology. Get to know some of the team below.
Chairman of the Board
Over 18 Years as a Partner and Senior Executive and 28 years as an International Information Technology and Business Management Consultant with Accenture, in Chicago. Principal owner of Monaco Air Duluth, LLC a full-service, fixed-base operator aviation services business at Duluth International Airport serving airline, military, and general aviation customers. Commissioner on the Metropolitan Airports Commission in Minneapolis – St. Paul (Minnesota Governor appointee). Commissioner and Vice-President of the Duluth Economic Development Authority (Duluth Mayor appointee). President of the Monaco Air Foundation, Chairman of the Miller-Dwan Foundation, Treasurer of Honor Flight Northland, Treasurer of the Duluth Aviation Institute, Co-Chair of the Northern Aero Alliance, a Director for the Destination Duluth non-profit corporation, a member of the Duluth Chamber of Commerce Military Affairs Committee.
Vice Chairman of the Board & CEO
Bill Kerby has over 27 years of experience in the travel and media industries, preceded by 10 years of experience in financial industry. Key milestones include the founding of one of the largest video creation companies in the North American real estate industry; R&R Television Network, with distribution into 34 million households; TravelByUs, a small-cap NASDAQ company that completed 21 travel industry-related acquisitions; and Leisure Canada, with 210 agencies, international tour operations in Great Britain, France, South Africa and the South Pacific, travel magazines and a Cuban hotel development. Prior to this he held and operated the master franchise for Thrifty Car Rental – B.C. Kerby holds a Specialized Honors Economics Degree York University.
Mr. Orange has extensive knowledge and experience in the investment industry, from corporate finance and M&As to building global growth companies. In 2006, Orange co-founded CorpAcq, where he has been responsible for identifying and negotiating acquisitions in conjunction with its corporate finance partners, as well overseeing strategic development, funding, and partnerships. Following a “buy and build” approach, CorpAcq maintains long-term investments in a diverse portfolio of successful businesses. Currently comprised of 19 portfolio companies, CorpAcq has been recognized as one of the fastest growing enterprises in the UK. Orange has been involved in funding and managing the growth of numerous business ventures, some that have been acquired by NASDAQ and London Stock Exchange-listed companies. He is also a founding member of Cicero Consulting Group, based in New York City.
A Senior Media and Advertising Executive with nearly three decades of hands-on management in all facets of interactive media. 14 years of service with Mediacom where he rose through the ranks to become the CEO for Mediacom North America, until recently headquartered in New York. With close to $18 billion in global billings, 4,600 employees, and 116 offices in 89 countries, Mediacom provides and specializes in business-building media solutions for some of the world’s largest, well-known advertisers. Previous to Mediacom, Doug started his career in a media company in Toronto, Canada, and was a partner when the company was acquired by Grey Worldwide and the WPP – Assisting in the design and implementation of all Web, Media and Advertising programs for Monaker’s Travel divisions.
Ms. Zubko has 14 years’ travel industry experience, delivering digital innovation to the hotel industry. Co-founded and served as chief customer officer & GM of Americas, Triptease, a disruptive SaaS-based hotel booking platform. Former VP & head of global strategy, InterContinental Hotels Group, and engagement manager at McKinsey & Co. Founded online social travel platform, TripTips. Earlier, manager of corporate development, NBC Universal, and began career as financial analyst, Goldman, Sachs & Co. IHIF Young Person Leader Award. Six Sigma certification, GE’s Crotonville Leadership campus. BA Economics, Columbia University; MBA, Stanford University Graduate School of Business.
20 Years of Senior Experience on Wall Street and currently serving on the Board of Directors as Vice Chairman of InfuSystem Holdings Inc. Council Member of the NYSE Amex Listed Company Council, an advisory group to the NYSE Euronext Companies. Board member of Technology Innovator Acquisition Ltd., and managing partner of Sulla Global Partners, LLC an advisory firm focused on China and Southeast Asia. Previously served as Group Head of Global Private Corporate Equity Placements at Credit Suisse First Boston, Managing Director and Head of the Private Equity Placement Group at Bear, Stearns, Managing Director and Group Head of the Private Finance and Sponsors Group at Legg Mason Wood Walker, Inc., and Managing Director and Head of Capital Markets at FTN Midwest. Mr. LaVecchia holds an MBA from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, BA, and was magna cum laude, at Clark University.
Jamie Mendola is currently the Head of Strategy and M&A for Mercer Park LP, a single-family office. He was previously the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of San Francisco-based Pacific Grove Capital. Pacific Grove was named the best new hedge fund by Hedge Funds Review in 2015 and Jamie received awards from Institutional Investor as a Hedge Fund Rising Star and was named as one of Tomorrow’s Titans by The Hedge Fund Journal. Pacific Grove initially invested in Monaker Group in 2017. Prior to founding Pacific Grove, Jamie was a Partner at Scout Capital, where he worked from 2009-2014. He was a senior member of the firm’s Investment and Risk Committees and helped to manage Scout’s Palo Alto office. Previously, Jamie gained experience as a Principal at Watershed Asset Management, a private equity analyst at JLL Partners and an analyst in the investment banking program of J.P. Morgan Chase. Jamie graduated with a B.S. in Management, summa cum laude, from Binghamton University, where he was a four-year letter winner in baseball. He earned his MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
Rupert Duchesne is a member of the Order of Canada, awarded by the Governor General of Canada in 2016. As a senior executive of Air Canada, he pioneered the development of the airline’s frequent flyer program from a company division to the independent global enterprise, Aimia. Under his leadership, Aimia grew from a single loyalty program in a single market to a global enterprise with operations in more than 20 countries. Mr. Duchesne joined Air Canada in 1996, where he held the positions of VP of Marketing, SVP of International, and ultimately chief integration officer, overseeing the integration of Air Canada with Canadian Airlines. Prior to Air Canada, he was active for 12 years in strategy and investment consulting around the world. He is a Director of Mattamy Homes, a Vice President of the Board of Trustees of the Art Gallery of Ontario, and Vice-Chair of the Board of the Luminato Festival. Rupert holds an MBA from the University of Manchester and a Bachelor Honours degree in Pharmacology from the University of Leeds.
Chief Information & Chief Operating Officer, joined the Monaker Management Team in October 2019, bringing more than 22 years of IT, sales, and operational experience in the travel industry. Mr. Sikora is a travel industry veteran, responsible for managing all information technologies including the ongoing integrations of travel distributors with the company’s Monaker Booking Engine (MBE), a customizable, instant-booking platform and managing the company’s technical teams. Previously, Sikora served as director of North America Sales at Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company. Prior to Boeing, he managed and led the expansion of two IT services companies: Peak 10, a leading data center and cloud services company, and Ciber, a global information technology infrastructure services provider. Earlier, Sikora served as director of Information Technology End User Services at US Airways. He led the airline’s integration of IT end-user platforms following the merger with America West. He was also responsible for governing IT resource planning, budgeting, and operational management for end-user services. Prior to US Airways, Sikora served as VP of airline operations and Chief Information Officer at Caribbean Sun Airlines, where he directed all IT and airline resource planning, budgeting and operational initiatives. Sikora has also served as manager of Information Technology at DHL Airways, a $500 million cargo airline where he directed the Information Technology group, a provider of contract aircraft services to DHL Worldwide Express. Sikora also held several other software development positions, including at Midwest Express Airlines.
Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer, and Secretary
Mr. Taepakdee has worked in accounting and finance for more than 32 years, garnering diverse experiences across several industries including hospitality, car rental, office product retail, manufacturer software, government, and an attorney office. His strong process improvement skills helped many companies increase productivities and decrease costs. Kent worked closely with IT teams to implement the Oracle system at Office Depot during the “Project Simplify” in 2007 – 2009. At Office Depot, Mr. Taepakdee also led the team of accountants and worked with the auditors to do the “Fixed Asset Cost Segregation” project, which saved the company millions. During his employment at Vanguard Car Rental USA Inc (Alamo and National Car Rental) after the September 11, 2001 (9/11) event, he involved and worked with the recovery team (appointed by the court) to do due diligence after the company filed for bankruptcy, and the company got out of the bankruptcy in early 2004. During 1997 – 2000, he served as the Assistant Food & Beverage Cost Controller at the Boca Raton Resort & Club in Boca Raton, Florida, and led the team to implement the F&B inventory system (two F&B warehouses). Mr. Taepakdee also served as the Chief Financial Officer at the Bangkok Naval Base (Royal Thai Navy) from 1986 to 1996. He received an MBA (with specialization in Finance) from Ramkhamhaeng University in Bangkok, Thailand and a BBA in Accounting (First Class Honors/Valedictorian) from Krirk University in Bangkok, Thailand.
VP of Product and Revenue Management
Randy Laser has over 20 years of commercial experience in the travel industry including start-ups, mergers and acquisitions. His commercial expertise includes Pricing, Revenue Management, Marketing, Sales, E-Commerce, Scheduling, Planning, Airline Tariff Publishing Company (ATPCO), and General Distribution Systems (GDS’s) with Sabre, Amadeus and Travelport. He managed system launches and cutovers at Legacy and LCC airlines and hotels that included American Airlines, Virgin America, Aloha Airlines, Midway Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Reno Air, Silver Airways, and the Hilton Hawaiian Village Hotel. Laser was a key revenue leader at several major airlines and hotels for strategic and innovative decision-making using revenue management systems, business intelligence tools, and building teams to optimize and enhance revenue. Randy holds an MBA from the University of San Diego and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Southern Methodist University.
VP of Product Development – NextTrip
Lori Hamilton is a sales and business development executive with 20+ years in travel, hospitality, real estate and non-profit industries. She was instrumental in growing sales for ANZ Travel to be a leader for South Pacific destination travel, and Executive Recruiter for Fortune 500 companies at Wetherby Partners and the Director of Development for non-profit organizations in Vancouver and Victoria, BC where she raised funds that tripled endowments to over $1.1 million. She also comes from a background of hospitality experience at Air Canada and Fairmont Group – Banff Springs Hotel.
VP of Product Development – Monaker Booking Engine
Connie Jimenez is a goal-driven business development professional with more than 20 years of experience in the fields of IT Staffing, Technology Sales and Hospitality. Ms. Jimenez is responsible for identifying and qualifying equitable supply and demand partners; coordinating business generation activities; and building business relationships with existing clients. In this role, Ms. Jimenez leads the collaboration of cross-functional global teams to drive the sales cycle between supply partners, channel management organizations and distribution partners.
VP of Marketing
Heather is a tenacious and accomplished Marketing and Public Relations strategist with 20 years’ experience in storytelling, including creating, launching and marketing national and international hospitality, consumer and lifestyle brands. Heather is a strategic thinker, natural leader and passionate about driving consumer behavior.
Prior to joining Monaker Group, Heather served as Director of Marketing for Marriott International where she introduced the new All-Inclusive platform beginning with the conversion of seven Barbados-based hotels in the Elegant Hotels portfolio. Before that, she was responsible for leading the global marketing strategy for Karisma Hotel & Resort’s collection of Gourmet Inclusive brands, including Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts, El Dorado Spa Resorts, Azul Beach Resorts, Generations Resorts, Hidden Beach Resort and Premiere Guest Services, Karisma’s Travel Club.
Heather also had her own marketing consultancy firm where she served as a high-level public relations, crisis management, social media and integrated marketing strategist to a number of companies including: SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale, Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa, Tenerife Corporation and Voyages to Antiquity.
VP of Product Development
Brandon Tipsword is a seasoned Hospitality Sales & Marketing professional with more than 12 years of experience. He has embraced the lifecycles in the industry from both the client/agency side. Currently, Mr. Tipsword oversees the entire product, sales & marketing for Maupintour. Brandon began his hospitality career with Vantage Hospitality Group, where he was responsible for managing hotel operations of 110+ individually owned & operated Americas Best Value Inn hotels in the Southeast/Gulfport Region. Later, Mr. Tipsword was hired as a key sales account manager for GCommerce Solutions in Park City, UT. There managed the company’s most successful client portfolio providing top-level Account Management, SEO, SEM, Social, Analytics & eMarketing. Mr. Tipsword was approached and hired by Wyndham Destinations, and quickly became a leading industry sales professional breaking records.
Director of Corporate Development
Richard Marshall is a senior executive with over 25 years of experience generating growth and relationships for global corporations. As the former Chief Development Officer for Sibling Group, an online education company, he led acquisition strategy, completed acquisition of a mobile education company and established international business with complementary distribution channels. As the VP of Investor Relations and VP of Corporate Development for Crystallex, Mr. Marshall helped close over $600 million USD in equity and debt financings during his 18 year tenure. The company joined six S&P indexes and market cap grew to well-over $1 billion, trading on TSX,AMEX and NYSE. Mr. Marshall was a part of senior team that developed the strategy and legal case, winning the $1.3 billion Award from Venezuela in the World Bank’s ICSID center. Earlier, Mr. Marshall was Broker, Investment Banker and Manager for Cohig & Associates, Corporate Securities Group, and JW Gant & Associates. University of Georgia, 1986, B.A. Economics.