Executive Travel CEO Steve Glenn has set his sights on "zero/zero," as in $0 in fees for online bookings and $0 for offline bookings. He thinks he's found the path, and it involves a financial model tied to client revenue performance, blockchain-based smart contracting and data access that gives transparency to each side.
Travelport president and CEO Gordon Wilson kicked off The Beat Live event this month and addressed airline control and commercial models in the context of the International Air Transport Association's New Distribution Capability standard-making endeavor.
Another week, another couple of entrants chasing the unmanaged-to-lightly managed business travel segment.
Even if plenty of managed travel professionals reject the concept, players that incentivize corporate travelers to beat trip budgets have gained investors, partners and some user acceptance. The latest to market is Tripkicks, which was founded this year with backing from Acquis Consulting to set trip budgets and offer monetary rewards to managed travelers who come in under budget.
Casto Travel CEO Marc Casto is over the transaction-based model that has dominated travel management company pricing for so long. Like a few other advocates for a shift, including AmTrav Corporate Travel and Executive Travel, he is attracted to a per-traveler, per-month "membership" model.
Publicly traded Australian travel management company Corporate Travel Management spent this week in damage control mode following a damning report from a hedge fund. That hedge fund has taken a short position in the company's stock and stands to gain on a fall in CTM's share price.
In June 2017, American Airlines announced a distribution offer that included a $2 per-segment incentive to any agency that booked through approved application programming interface connections. At the time, agencies had to issue a ticket through American's API connection by the end of 2018 to lock in the incentive through 2020. VP of sales and distribution strategy Cory Garner this week said the airline will give agencies another year to take the offer.
In the run-up to Travelport's agreement last month to go private with Siris Capital Group and Evergreen Coast Capital, 10 different "financial sponsors" and five "strategic parties" emerged as potential suitors for the global distribution system operator or its assets.
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.