For those of you who attended the Datalex conference, you had the unique opportunity to preview how Datalex, together with PROS, intends to change the world of air shopping and retailing. And during the conference, the question was raised “Is this the end of air shopping?”
I have heard on multiple occasions how airlines wish they could not only tailor their shopping and retail strategies by market, season, time, loyalty etc. (which, by the way, Datalex allows you do quite easily), but by what a customer bought, and more importantly, by what they didn’t buy. And, wouldn’t it be great if all of this together drove the cost of the trip, and continued to dynamically drive the cost of the trip every time the customer shopped?
As provocative as the question “Is this end of air shopping?” is, air shopping isn’t going anywhere. Or, at least not any time soon. However what Datalex and PROS will be bringing to the market is more flexibility than ever thought possible. And instead of talking about providing the right price, at the right time to the right customer, we are going to deliver this in its truest form – tailored to every customer who shops your channels. The question is, as an airline, are you ready for what you’ve asked for?
We at Datalex and PROS think you are. And we are excited to watch you change the air shopping game. If you didn’t get the chance to see what we’re up to, drop me a line – I’ll be happy to speak to you about how Datalex and PROS can launch your revenues to new heights – literally.
Head of Airline Retail
The first thing I learnt on day one of my first sales job; know your product and know your customer. Do you know me? I’m not a channel and I’m not 15c; I’m me. As you don’t know me, you don’t know that I only drink peppermint tea and that’s why you never have it onboard, on early morning flights I like to sleep and on evening flights I would buy a gourmet meal. How can you differentiate yourself to me if you don’t know what I value? I often travel with you, and tell you a lot about me, but you don’t seem to listen. If you want me to love your brand, you could at least offer me a drink that I like or give me a nice dinner; at the very least chat me up.
Business Development Director, Datalex
How Standards Proliferate – Lesson One:
VP Marketing & Strategy, Datalex
This week marked the 13th annual OpenTravel Advisory forum, for more see www.opentravel.com
OpenTravel is the defacto specification for travel interoperability. Its adoption is ubiquitous, and the specification has accelerated the evolution of travel distribution.
OpenTravel constituents represent a diverse mix of airline, car and hotel groups along with the more kinetic long tail entities such as day tours, trekking, experiential travel and the like who lean on OpenTravel not just as a specification provider, but as a template to define their capability.
At this year’s forum I covered the discussion around NDC, and what was the implication to the membership.
- What is it: See Datalex CEO, Aidan Brogan’s article in Airline Business on NDC, it is a great primer.
- What’s Datalex’s position: The capability NDC envisions, is what we do; it’s how Datalex drives value for over 50 airlines worldwide, including the largest, most profitable and most innovative. NDC – it’s our DNA, it’s how we work!
- What does it mean to me: There is no doubt that an airline’s capability to merchandize the right product at the right time to the right person is no longer just a good idea, it’s a business imperative. As partners to airlines, and as future players in your own versions of NDC, what does this mean for you?
- Scale/capability: NDC speaks to the need of the airline to own its platform, to be able to present and merchandize its own and partners’ products understanding the consumer’s needs. It expects that as partners to an airline you have system capability to manage hundreds of thousands of search requests in real time, present differentiated results based on consumer context and to drive to a true direct connect.
Our takeaway- Learn the lesson of others who have relied on intermediaries and legacy technology suppliers for distribution and who now face a huge challenge for relevancy. While we have been assured that IATA does not recommend any particular provider, our position is that the demands of the airlines will drive the best fit technologies and standards for use. OpenTravel members have a distinct advantage; they have been doing this for the last 13 years. NDC presents a paradigm where the membership can lead the discussion and drive value to their trading partners. In 2016 60% of airline business will be conducted in a direct and relevant manner across many touch points.
We’re ready for the challenge – Are you?
VP & GM Americas, Datalex
Datalex was proud to sponsor the CAPA Airlines in Transition Conference in Dublin last week. Lots of lively debate from airline CEOs on regulation, revenue, cost models and competition. Willie Walsh, CEO of IAG in typical frank manner, swept away the excuses: unions, business models etc, and noted management need to be determined to succeed, manage costs and ensure a return on capital invested. Dave Barger, CEO of JetBlue and Christoph Mueller, CEO of Aer Lingus were optimistic that ongoing structural change across industry would improve profitability, and that no one model fits all. The regulators took a unified hit from the airlines present. Alliances were not seen as a guarantee for survival unless the revenue synergies exist. Capacity consolidation and market segmentation will continue to evolve. Datalex CEO Aidan Brogan noted that airlines need to apply more retail science to revenue models for highest margin return. The focus must be on the total travel PNR and traveller experience. He noted that the business infrastructure must support a retail mindset, referencing the WestJet guest experience as an innovative model.
VP Marketing & Strategy, Datalex
Great content and discussion again at the recent IT Business Forum of AACO, held in Muscat. Quality organisation from AACO on agenda and venue. The landscape in the Middle East is rapidly changing with the advances of Air Arabia, NAS Air, and FlyDubai. AACO members are fully focused on enhancing merchandising, Big Data, and NDC.
Presenters gathered together on stage, and all were asked to give a summary. One by one each gave their experienced opinion and advice. When it came to Massimo from Google: “I would like to summarise as follows, We Are Google”.
So not missing the presented opportunity, and being next to summarise, I opened: “We Are Datalex”.
This month’s Airline Business magazine reports on Datalex’s leadership in the airline industry’s retail transformation. At Datalex, we have abstracted from the constraints and restrictions of industry PSS systems to drive innovation. Moreover, we have driven innovation in merchandising where standards did not yet exist. Datalex has a unique pedigree in guiding standards for new distribution practice in industry. As founding members of the OpenTravel Alliance (and current board member), Datalex was a key contributor to the first OpenTravel XML standards for air shopping and more recently in 2012, Datalex’s schema was adopted as the basis for the OpenTravel Merchandising schema, voted as the most proven and scalable in industry. Datalex has supported evolving ATPCO standards, IATA EMD standards and today is a key participant in the IATA NDC working group, working with airlines to support and evolve the NDC standard today and in the future.
Datalex customers require control and agility in their retail platform to keep pace in competitively differentiating their brand and offering. This requires a retail platform that seamlessly integrates to but is not limited by underlying PSS systems or indeed industry standards. With our customers and partners, we continue to outpace, and to look for better, faster and smarter solutions.
Our industry partners share the objective to innovate at pace in support of airline customers. Most recently, we are working closely with PROS to apply big data science to pricing and shopping for more efficient availability, more effective price optimisation and increased profitability for our airlines.
SVP Global Sales
Airlines are focused on transforming their retail strategies, with a view to boosting their bottom line while delivering improved service and value across the traveller experience.
As part of this move, low margin air revenue is being supplemented with high margin ancillary sales. A larger product portfolio offered across an increasing number of channels and touchpoints means the number of merchandising decisions to manage has increased exponentially.
As consumers, we are accustomed to contextual, collaborative and intuitive conversations with retailers such as Amazon, Zappos or eBay feeding our demand of who we are, where we are and what we value… for relevance in real time. We look to minimise dwell time in an always-connected world. We do not want more aggregated content and choice which adds complexity, has no context to our shopping journey, and takes no account
Read the full article
VP Marketing & Strategy, Datalex
Datalex’s VP & GM Americas Gianni Cataldo talks about increasing traveler engagement, watch.
Datalex has released a TDP enhancement to comply with the United States Department of Transportation (US DOT) provisions of Consumer Rule II pertaining to the disclosure and assessment of baggage fees, ahead of 24th July 2012 deadline.
The mandate applies to all journeys where travel is to, from or within the U.S. and states the baggage allowances and charges of the first marketing carrier apply throughout the journey. The DOT rules require the disclosure of baggage allowances and charges at the time of fare quotation, and must be added to electronic tickets and included in email itinerary confirmations. For international itineraries, airlines can use the IATA Most Significant Carrier (MSC) standard for deciding which carrier’s rules should apply.
VP Marketing & Strategy, Datalex