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Traxo launches marketplace to manage corporate travel data

PhocusWire·21 February 2018
Corporate travel managers looking to uncover off-channel bookings now have an additional tool to streamline the process. Dallas-based Traxo, which provides itinerary intelligence and travel data aggregation technology, has created a new product to integrate off-channel booking data with duty-of-care, expense, price assurance and agency partners.

In The Big Chair - Steve Milo of VTrips

PhocusWire·20 February 2018
What accounts for the fragmentation in the vacation rental industry? In North America, the vacation rental industry was born in locally owned real estate offices in resort destinations, and the rental division was set up in many cases to enable the sale of real estate. It was not uncommon for the most unsuccessful real estate agents to be assigned to the rental division.

Can Airbnb trigger a revolution in hotel distribution?

PhocusWire·20 February 2018
Given the size of Airbnb, recent coverage of its potential to open up to hotel distribution has been well worth the fanfare. Although it has already stated its low commissions (a direct poke in the eye of online travel agencies), little has been written about the ticking time bomb for distribution which is the different system of costs and prices. This, in turn, mixes the agency and the merchant models, adding unique characteristics to them.
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Why "smart cities" disguise other issues

PhocusWire·20 February 2018
The term “smart city” is interesting yet not important, because nobody defines it. “Smart” is a snazzy political label used by a modern alliance of leftist urbanites and tech industrialists. To deem yourself “smart” is to make the nimbyites and market-force people look stupid. However, the cities of the future won’t be “smart,” or well-engineered, cleverly designed, just, clean, fair, green, sustainable, safe, healthy, affordable, or resilient.
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Older travelers rely on OTAs, Gen Z looks to mobile for trip inspiration

PhocusWire·20 February 2018
Online travel agencies are the planning and booking tool of choice for older generations of European travelers, while younger consumers are increasingly turning toward smartphones before and during trips. These patterns of behavior are among the findings of a study from Expedia Media Solutions examining traveler preferences across generations in Germany, France and the United Kingdom.
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Webjet opens blockchain marketplace to external partners

PhocusWire·20 February 2018
Webjet is expanding its blockchain initiative, Rezchain, to four companies: Thomas Cook, DidaTravel, Mitra Global and Far East Hospitality. Webjet created the solution in partnership with Microsoft beginning in 2016. Since then it has been using it internally for the B2B segment of its business, WebBeds, which offers more than 250,000 hotels in Europe, Middle East, Africa, North and South America and Asia through its brands Lots of Hotels, Sunhotels, FIT Ruums and JacTravel.
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OneFineStay eyes business travel expansion through MagicStay deal

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
AccorHotels-owned upmarket rental brand OneFineStay is targeting corporates as part of an ongoing expansion plan to reach beyond high-end leisure travelers. The agreement comes amid a series of high-level exec changes taking place at the UK-based OneFineStay. More than 1,000 of the site's properties in locations such as London, Paris, New York and Los Angeles will be included in the MagicStay network of business travel-focused rental properties.

The case for a decentralized internet

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
The internet is still early in its evolution: the core internet services will likely be almost entirely rearchitected in the coming decades. The first and second eras of the internet are behind us now. And the next phase will be enabled by crypto-economic networks, a generalization of the ideas first introduced in Bitcoin and further developed in Ethereum.
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Zoomcar steers to electric rental future with $40 million round

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
Car manufacturer Mahindra & Mahindra is leading a $40 million investment in on-demand car rental service Zoomcar. The India-based service has also retained the interest of the Ford Motor Company, which has returned for a second round after participating in an earlier investment. The new Series C round brings the total amount raised by the five-year-old company to more than $100 million.
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The journey before the journey: How travel marketers establish trust with consumers

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
The last couple of decades have seen the advent of some very useful and powerful trip planning and booking tools, but planning a vacation is not just scientific, it is emotional, aspirational and inspirational. For many families, it is precious quality time they get only once or twice a year. Aligning schedules, choosing a destination, mode of travel, activities: it’s all part of a process driven by instinct and emotion. It’s the “Journey before the Journey.”
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Research Spotlight: Asia Pacific's fast-growing OTA landscape

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
In the Asia Pacific region, aggregate gross bookings via online travel agencies are projected to jump 68% from 2017 to 2012, making OTAs the fastest-growing online distribution channel in the area. China leads the pack as APAC’s largest OTA market, and a majority of OTA bookings in the region are now completed on mobile. A new report from Phocuswright surveys OTA distribution from 2015 to 2021, including a look at the major APAC competitors, notable trends, gross bookings and how mobile has changed the game.
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Decoding blockchain, part 3: Flight data management

PhocusWire·19 February 2018
Depending on who you listen to, cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin will either change fundamental aspects of people’s daily lives - financial services, healthcare, retail and, yes, travel - or they’re a sham, a prime example of much ado about nothing. There is less debate, though, about the underlying system that powers those cryptocurrencies: blockchain.
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Top reasons why startups find themselves in the deadpool

PhocusWire·16 February 2018
The travel industry is littered with the remains of startups that came and went quicker than you can say "great, but please tell us how you're going to make money." Depending on who you listen to, success rates for new businesses attempting to make a mark on the $1.3 trillion travel, tourism and hospitality sector are somewhere in the region of 15% to 30%.
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Digital tools to enhance the value of airline offerings

PhocusWire·16 February 2018
The traveler path to purchase is influenced by countless factors, but above all, consumers make decisions based on how they interpret the value of an offer at any given moment. How brands digitally interact with consumers directly impacts this purchase behavior, and data holds the key to understanding how to provide travelers the right value at the right time. A report from Amadeus called “Embracing Airline Digital Transformation” dubs the current era of datafication and connectivity the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” - a time when technology has the potential to bridge the gap between brands and consumers like never before.
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QOTW: Something about putting pieces in the Troogle jigsaw

PhocusWire·16 February 2018
There was a time, around 11 years ago, when the word "Troogle" was floated around in the industry and the business media. It was never a serious brand name for Google efforts in the travel sector, but it was a useful catch-all for those who were beginning to see and suspect what the company was doing. Back then, Google was indeed just a "search giant" - pre-YouTube and DoubleClick acquisitions, and a long time before the company's official first foray into the travel sector.
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TripAdvisor bets on TV advertising, improved UX to restore profit in hotel segment

PhocusWire·15 February 2018
TripAdvisor will expand its television advertising spending in the ballpark of from $100 to $130 million for its hotel segment during 2018, with new creative and new markets, while simultaneously reducing online marketing spend.
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Wyndham Worldwide offloads European rental brands for $1.3 billion

PhocusWire·15 February 2018
James Villa Holidays, Landal GreenParks and Hoseasons are under new ownership after Wyndham Worldwide finalized a deal to sell its European vacation rental business to Platinum Equity. The $1.3 billion deal includes a 20-year agreement for the brands to pay a 1% royalty fee of net revenue to Wyndham so that they can continue to use the Wyndham Vacation Rentals brand for endorsement.
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Google, Airbnb and the evolving distribution landscape

PhocusWire·15 February 2018
Airbnb and Google made notable announcements in the first week of February – the former opening its platform to hotel distribution and the latter rolling out updates to expand and simplify travel search. Both moves are indicative of the evolving landscape in distribution, creating new challenges to online travel agencies and additional options for hotels and other accommodation providers.
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Full speaker roster, topics and a EUR400 saving for Phocuswright Europe

PhocusWire·15 February 2018
It's just three months to go until the best travel conference in Europe returns to the Dutch city of Amsterdam. Phocuswright Europe's TWO-DAY event has an unparalleled roster of movers and shakers from across the industry, debates that get to the heart of trends in online travel, technology and distribution, and the best networking this side of Los Angeles (when our sister brand's flagship event takes place in November).
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Why small property owners see OTAs as a "necessary evil"

PhocusWire·15 February 2018
The codependent nature of small property owners and their booking partners has its upsides, but primarily, it’s viewed by the underdogs as a “necessary evil.”
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TripAdvisor has revenue elsewhere to thank as hotel growth remains flat

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
TripAdvisor turned in modest 5% growth in total revenue for 2017 but a notable 24% increase in revenue in its non-hotel category. In fact, the non-hotel segment, which includes attractions, restaurants and vacation rentals, now accounts for 23% of the company’s revenue. In 2014, non-hotel activity accounted for just 9% of total revenue.
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China's road to becoming a technology superpower

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
It seems extraordinary now that Western travel brands were encouraged to "target" China and "make the most of the Chinese opportunity" - such was the naivety in the strategy that companies could simply bluster their way in. As we've since seen with the growth (and ambition) of Ctrip and others, it was the homegrown talent that always was one step ahead and could do a lot more, eventually, outside of the China's walls.
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Duetto raises massive $80 million to push hotel tech platform

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
Duetto can boast $143.2 million in funding rounds to date after landing a huge Series D investment of $80 million this week. The hotel revenue management and analytics provider has attracted the support of funds belonging to Warburg Pincus, it says in a statement.
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Sabre posts record revenue for 2017 despite slowing growth

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
Sabre saw revenues hit more than $3.5 billion during 2017, in what the company claims was a "transformational year" for the business. The increase of 6.7% year over year is the lowest since Sabre returned the public markets in early-2014, with climbs of 12.5% (2014 to 2015) and 13.9% (2015 to 2016).
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Travel buyers show modest support for NDC (but many still have no idea)

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
A year ago, just 11% of travel buyers in a survey said they believe IATA's New Distribution Capability is "a good thing" for the industry. Fast forward 12 months and the same group have changed their mind - well, some of them.
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Q&A: How blockchain is helping Webjet improve efficiency, cut costs for hotel bookings

PhocusWire·14 February 2018
When Microsoft announced in November 2016 that it was working with Australia-based online travel agency Webjet to build a blockchain proof-of-concept solution, the term “blockchain” was still relatively unknown. Fast-forward less than 18 months, and now blockchain has become one of the hottest topic across not just travel but also finance, healthcare and many other industries.

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