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Welcome to Travel Tech Essentialist

Thanks for subscribing to my newsletter on my Medium blog. This is the first one, so let's see how it

Travel Tech Essentialist

May 30 · Issue #1 · View online
A short newsletter every two weeks with my pick of the top 10 Travel Tech stories and innovations shaping the world's largest and fastest growing industry.

Thanks for subscribing to my newsletter on my Medium blog. This is the first one, so let’s see how it turns out :-) My plan is to send a short email every two weeks with 10 items that have caught my interest in the online travel ecosystem. Any feedback and suggestions will be highly appreciated. Thanks and I hope you stay around.

1. Amazon steps into travel again by offering domestic flights in India (powered by Cleartrip).
2. Ctrip sales up 21% in Q1 2019, at more than $1B. Products with highest growth: corporate travel (+32%) and packaged tours (+25%).
3. Expedia and the future of OTAs. Video interview with Cyril Ranque, President of President Lodging Partner Services at Expedia.
4. Global Private Equity firms betting on African OTAs. HarbourVest Partners ($58 bn under management) invests in South Africa’s Travelstart and The Carlyle Group ($212 bn under management) invests $40 million in Nigeria’s Wakanow.
5. Investors take notice as LATAM travel startup activity picks up.  
6. My latest post on Medium looks at airline ancillary revenues, a category that now represents 20% of airline revenues, with a 30x growth in the last decade.
7. Hospitality models blur. Airbnb unveiled a hotel-inspired type of accommodation and Marriott launched a vacation-rental platform. I guess Airbnb wants to be more like Marriott and Marriott wants to be more like Airbnb.
8. Accor invests $10 million in conversational AI startup Mindsay (previously called Destygo). Mindsay’s other travel customers include Iberia, Vueling, Disneyland Paris and SNCF. Conversational AI sounds better than chatbots.
9. Hackathon for Airlines, Hotels, OTAs & Travel Startups on July 3-5 in Lisbon (no coding or technical background required). Organized by Winding Tree, a nonprofit creating a decentralized travel distribution network through open-source and blockchain technology. 
10. Three cool travel startups:
  • Hepstar enables travel merchants to maximize revenues from travel insurance sales using personalized customer engagement. BAsed in South Africa.
  • Gordian Software enables airlines to easily sell ancillaries via OTAs and other third party travel aggregators. Founder is a 3.5 year Skyscanner veteran, so he knows a thing or two about airline integrations. Based in Silicon Valley.
  • Beyond Pricing is a revenue management and dynamic pricing software exclusively for vacation rentals to maximize revenue and occupancy. Based in San Francisco.
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