Travelport Introduces Travelport Accelerator to Address Travel Sector’s Pressing Retailing Concerns
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Travelport Introduces Travelport Accelerator to Address Travel Sector’s Pressing Retailing Concerns

By CIOReview | Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The first challenge Travelport and AWS have set for themselves is to bring cutting-edge digital marketing technology for travel companies that combines behavioral and demographic passenger data to give highly targeted and personalized, real-time offers to customers.

FREMONT, CA: Travelport, a global leader in travel retail, has launched Travelport Accelerator, a new international accelerator program in collaboration with Amazon Web Services (AWS) committed to addressing the travel industry’s most pressing retailing concerns.

“No single person or business has the solution to all of travels retailing challenges,” said Tom Kershaw, Chief Product and Technology Officer, Travelport. “The most effective way to drive innovation, especially at pace, is to unite bright minds from diverse backgrounds and geographic locations and focus their energy on solving a specific problem. That is precisely what Travelport Accelerator will do. We look forward to working with companies across the world, both large and small, to drive the modernization of travel retailing for the benefit of the entire travel ecosystem.”

Travelport Accelerator

The Travelport Accelerator will see tech entrepreneurs and innovators aiming to enter the travel market tackle various travel retailing concerns, including data protection, hyper-personalization, and client acquisition. Businesses with existing technology and products that are pertinent to the challenge and use cases stated on the accelerator webpage are welcome to submit once the challenge has been set.

Up to ten companies will be chosen to advance to the next stage, which involves pitching solutions to a distinguished panel of judges from some of the world’s most prestigious travel companies, including American Express Global Business Travel, Internova Travel Group, Direct Travel, Priceline, and Christopherson Business Travel. A group of up to three contestants will be chosen to go to the final stage, where they will work with Travelport and AWS to solve the problem. Travelport+, Travelport’s next-generation travel marketplace, will be available to anyone.

Selected start-ups may be eligible for up to 100,000 dollars in AWS Activate credit, and each participant will be mentored by travel domain and technical subject matter experts with extensive AWS expertise. The initiative also allows collaboration with AWS travel customers and AWS Partner Network (APN) members seeking technology solutions to their most challenging issues.

David Peller, Managing Director, AWS Travel and Hospitality, said: “With millions of active customers, AWS enables organizations of every size, around the world, to innovate. Travelport Accelerator supports that effort by giving travel innovators the potential to pitch their technology to some of the most influential leaders in the global travel industry and to influence the future of travel retailing. We are proud to collaborate with Travelport on this as we work together to optimize Travelport+ and create a simpler, smarter, and better future for travel retailing.”

The First Challenge

The first challenge Travelport and AWS have set for themselves is to bring cutting-edge digital marketing technology for travel companies that combines behavioral and demographic passenger data to give highly targeted and personalized, real-time offers to customers. The solution must complement Travelport+’s sophisticated capabilities, which execute hundreds of millions of travel transactions in a typical year while also lowering the cost of customer acquisition and retention for Travelport’s customers. Today is the last day to apply. At www.travelport.com/accelerator, you can find entry forms. The deadline for submissions is Wednesday, September 22, 2021, at midnight Pacific Daylight Time (PDT).

Applications will be evaluated based on several criteria, including the innovative and unique nature of the solution, the overarching value it will bring to the industry, the inventive application of technology to solve issues, and the team’s competence to deliver on the opportunity with Travelport and its customers.

“The sheer volume of channels that communicate messages to people today is breathtaking, as is the amount of content each pushes out. Our brains are therefore forced to prioritize the information they receive. If you are not compelling enough, you will be at the back of the queue forgotten, literally. To be heard, it is now table stakes for digital marketing to be highly targeted and hyper-personalized. Historically, this has been a challenge for travel companies because selling travel is complex, access to travel data has been limited, pricing is real time, demand trends evolve rapidly, and offers contain multiple products. Due to this, according to a recent study by Sojern, 84 percent of marketing professionals in the travel industry now see AI and machine learning for personalization of digital marketing as a high or very high priority. Challenges, however, are there to be overcome, and we believe this challenge can be solved by bringing together the right people and the right technology. We cannot wait to get started!” said Jen Catto, Chief Marketing Officer, Travelport.

Travelport Accelerator is now a part of Travelport Focus, an AWS-supported Travelport innovation hub. Three pillars support the hub: technology, intelligence, and customer feedback. The Travelport Accelerator, which sits alongside product telemetry in the Technology pillar, is focused on generating experiences that change travel commerce. Travelport, AWS, and worldwide analysts conduct and disseminate research, data, and insights that guide decision-making and inspire industry change under the Intelligence pillar. Customers and developers of Travelport’s can have their voice on product design and roadmaps through Customer Voice.