Each new year brings a new outlook, and by measures both anecdotal and numerical, corporate travel demand is off to a strong start in 2019. This is on top of what has proven to be a healthy 2018 for corporate travel demand.
In total, the U.S. federal government is the largest buyer of travel in the world. And so, when a portion of the government goes unfunded and hundreds of thousands of civilian employees are furloughed or working without pay, a negative impact on suppliers and intermediaries that serve federal travel programs is expected.
MisterFly, a French travel tech company best known for its namesake online travel agency, announced Tuesday that it has acquired mTrip, the Montreal-based mobile app builder that has gained a growing roster of travel management company clients.
BCD Travel is taking the next step to evolve its mobile capabilities from itinerary management to itinerary creation. The mega travel management company announced plans soon to enable airline shopping and booking capabilities through TripSource, which covers its native mobile app and responsive Web channels.
Since American Express Global Business Travel shifted five years ago to a joint-venture structure and took a big injection of capital, the question has been asked time and time again: How will the mega travel management company use the money? In addition to a couple splashy acquisitions—last year's HRG deal and 2016's purchase of corporate booking and expense provider KDS—Amex GBT also has been working behind the scenes for years to upgrade its core technology stack.
Tech companies that help travel programs incentivize employees to book at lower prices have been attracting fresh funding. TripActions announced $51 million of Series B financing in March, and Rocketrip won $15 million of Series C financing in April. Those follow TravelBank's $25 million Series B funding last year for its travel booking and expense technology that also promotes a rewards program for travelers who beat budgets.
Travel and Transport has acquired London-based travel management company Statesman Travel Group.
To assess major technology concepts and examine how they are applied within the corporate travel ecosystem, The Beat this year handpicked a few dozen experts attuned to trends in technology and travel to rate the coming relevance of seven computer science and tech fields.