Kayak Is Rolling Out a New Platform for Business Travelers

Skift | November 01, 2019

Corporate travel is a highly competitive, but very lucrative industry, and more companies are choosing to get involved. Travel search site Kayak announced Friday a new platform for business travelers called Kayak for Business. Different from its general site, the portal is meant to help employees plan and manage business travel, giving them access to corporate fares, providing a streamlined approval process, and helping to verify whether or not a traveler is booking within policy.

Spotlight

Robots have been a staple of science fiction and childhood dreams for over a century. It’s no exaggeration to say that they have the potential to enhance our lives in ways no other interface can today. But how can social robots help humans? And which industries are on the cusp of the robotics revolution?

One example of how Furhat can be used is in the hospitality industry. Whether that's in hotels or restaurants, social robots can deliver great automated customer service that still feels human.

Spotlight

Robots have been a staple of science fiction and childhood dreams for over a century. It’s no exaggeration to say that they have the potential to enhance our lives in ways no other interface can today. But how can social robots help humans? And which industries are on the cusp of the robotics revolution?

One example of how Furhat can be used is in the hospitality industry. Whether that's in hotels or restaurants, social robots can deliver great automated customer service that still feels human.

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AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS

Eviation Announces Letter of Intent for the All-Electric Alice from Air New Zealand

Air New Zealand | December 14, 2022

Eviation Aircraft, a manufacturer of all-electric aircraft, announced that Air New Zealand has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) for up to 23 aircraft as part of its Mission NextGen Aircraft program. The airline is the first national flag carrier to sign a letter of intent to order as part of its ambitious initiative to lead the roll out of zero-emission airplanesThe nine-seater Alice is the first flight-proven all-electric commuter aircraft and promises to usher in a new era of carbon-free, cost-effective and convenient aviation. Alice is powered by two magni650 electric propulsion units developed by magniX, the global industry leader in flight-proven electric propulsion systems. Built from a clean-sheet design, the aircraft costs significantly less to operate per flight hour compared to light jets or high-end turboprops. "Regional flights make up a sizeable proportion of Air New Zealand's routes. The Alice offers an effective way to decarbonize these journeys, revolutionizing air travel and supporting the goals of the Mission NextGen Aircraft program, New Zealand has earned a proud reputation for its progressive attitude and wide-ranging policies towards the climate challenge. The Alice is a beautiful aircraft that will delight airline operators and passengers. Seeing it soar through the skies of New Zealand is a magical prospect, and I pay tribute to Air New Zealand's commitment to innovation and sustainability." -Gregory Davis, President and CEO of Eviation This endorsement from a national flag carrier shows how the Alice has captured the imagination of the marketplace," said Eddie Jaisaree, Vice President, Commercial Sales at Eviation. "New Zealand has just experienced its warmest, wettest winter on record. As the impacts of climate change become more apparent and efforts to regulate aviation's carbon emissions intensify, we are excited for how the Alice will help Air New Zealand to lead the airline industry into a sustainable future. Tackling Climate Change with Innovation Air New Zealand's Mission NextGen Aircraft program was announced last month with the goal of accelerating the adoption of zero-emission aircraft. The airline is aiming to have its first zero emissions flight from 2026. "Mission NextGen Aircraft represents a significant commitment to the development of sustainable aircraft and the supporting infrastructure needed to decarbonize our domestic flights," said Greg Foran, CEO of Air New Zealand. "Eviation's all-electric Alice aircraft is a natural fit for the program with its proven technology that is optimized for short-range flights." About Eviation Aircraft Based in Washington State, Eviation Aircraft Inc. develops and manufactures electric aircraft to delight operators and passengers with green, cost efficient and convenient regional transportation. Its electric propulsion units, high-energy-density batteries, mission-driven energy management, and innovative airframe are designed from the ground up for electric flight. Please visit us at www.eviation.com. About Air New Zealand Air New Zealand's story started in 1940, first taking to the skies between Auckland and Sydney on a flying boat. Known for its warm Kiwi hospitality, today the airline has 98 operating aircraft ranging from Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and Airbus A320s to ATRs and Q300s. Air New Zealand has a well-connected domestic business, connecting customers and cargo to 20 different regions around New Zealand. Internationally, the airline has direct flights to major cities across Australia, Asia, the Pacific Islands and the U.S., and through its strong relationships with alliance partners, offers customers more choice and convenience to connect further afield to hundreds of destinations. Air New Zealand has a particular focus on sustainability and its Sustainability Framework helps guide the airline's efforts in tackling some of New Zealand's and the world's most complex challenges

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AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

FLYR Partners with Azul to Optimize Revenue Management

FLYR Labs | January 30, 2023

FLYR Labs, an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven forecasting, pricing, and commercial-wide decision-making solutions provider, recently partnered with Brazilian airline Azul to implement FLYR's advanced AI technologies. The technologies will enhance the airline's revenue management strategy, beginning with fare bundles and ancillary product optimization, addressing the growing customer demands. FLYR will provide Azul with comprehensive pricing, data management, and forecasting capabilities that enable personalized offers for customers to assist the airline in achieving its goal of allowing total revenue management and dynamic offer optimization. Azul's primary source of profit is the sale of ancillary products such as priority boarding, seat selection, luggage, and fare families. The AI-based Revenue Optimization solution offered by FLYR combines all available historical and real-time data with deep learning algorithms to determine the ideal pricing and distribution strategy. The solution from FLYR will enable Azul to provide real-time prices for each customer's shopping request or as a scheduled continuous price. This allows the airline to provide travelers with the right ancillaries at the perfect price, with little change to the present shopping infrastructure. It also predicts anticipated revenues for each flight, all within an intuitive user interface. Since its start in 2008, Azul has been the fastest-growing airline in Brazil, and it now has the country's largest airline network in terms of cities served, with flights to over 150 destinations. Alex Mans, Founder and CEO of FLYR, commented, "We're excited to partner with Azul and harness the power of AI to improve their revenue management and offerings for customers." He added, "The limitations of legacy technology mean airlines have historically struggled to understand how changes in fares can affect ancillary revenues. Through our partnership, we will provide Azul with a crucial competitive advantage when it comes to boosting profitability and enhancing the customer experience." (Source – GlobeNewswire) About FLYR Labs Based in Santa Monica (California), FLYR Labs provides airlines with the intelligence and insight they need to make the best-informed decisions through its proprietary Revenue Operating System. Its vertically integrated platform combines data, forecasting, reporting, pricing, and simulation capabilities into a "single pane of glass" that informs and automates all commercial functions. The company solves complex problems with brilliantly engineered solutions that rely on end-to-end Managed Data Infrastructure and deep learning (AI) to assist leading airlines worldwide in achieving their full potential.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Highgate announces agreement to acquire viceroy hotels & resorts

Highgate | December 19, 2022

An affiliate of the Principals of Highgate announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Viceroy Hotels & Resorts (Viceroy). The LA-based, award-winning hospitality group is known for its highly individual modern luxury hotels and resorts throughout the world, and was voted one of the top 10 hotel brands globally in the 2022 Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards. The Viceroy brand debuted in 2000 with the launch of Viceroy Santa Monica and has evolved into a portfolio of hotels and resorts in iconic destinations such as St Lucia, Chicago, Los Cabos and Snowmass. "We are excited for Viceroy's future and we believe that this acquisition will not only fuel the future expansion of our brand, but also give us a true partner, one who will offer incredible support, opportunity and collaboration. This deal will accelerate our momentum, and solidify our position as the leading modern luxury lifestyle brand in our space," stated Bill Walshe, CEO of Viceroy. "We are thrilled to execute this transaction with Viceroy. Viceroy has built an outstanding customer reputation due in part to its strong service culture and incredible team,Through complementing Viceroy's platform and DNA with Highgate's diversified ability to grow through real estate acquisitions, development, and third-party growth channels, Highgate intends to add brand-accretive hotels to the Viceroy portfolio that will further enhance customer perception and brand awareness. Further, through powering Viceroy with a proprietary relationship with Highgate's operating company, and imparting the benefits of Highgate's scale, we will be able to provide significant incremental value to associates, guests, owners and partners." -Richard Russo, Principal at Highgate. We look forward to working with the Viceroy team to add visible and impactful hotels to the platform, and cement Viceroy as one of the most noteworthy luxury lifestyle hotel brands in the industry,continued Russo. In the coming months, we will be announcing exciting additions to the portfolio in major urban gateway markets and select resort destinations that will invoke the distinct quality and luxury service that Viceroy has long been known for. The transaction is expected to close in early 2023. For more information on Highgate, visit Highgate.com. ABOUT HIGHGATE: Highgate is a leading real estate investment and hospitality management company with over $20 billion of assets under management. Highgate has a 30-year track record as an investment manager, operating partner, and developer for REITs, private equity firms, sovereign wealth funds, high net worth individuals, and other institutional investors. With a particular focus in hospitality real estate, Highgate's portfolio includes over 500 owned and/or managed hotels comprising over 84,000 rooms across the United States, Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Highgate's capabilities extend to adjacent real estate verticals including multifamily, short-term rentals, and diversified healthcare real estate, as well as investments in real estate-linked securities, technology platforms, and hospitality-related operating businesses. Highgate maintains corporate offices in New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, London, Miami, Seattle, and Waikiki. For more information, visit: www.highgate.com ABOUT VICEROY HOTELS & RESORTS: Viceroy Hotels & Resorts is a global modern luxury brand, inspiring travelers with one-of-a-kind, authentic experiences that bring together provocative design and intuitive service. Dynamic destinations immersed in the local community and culture are at the core of the Viceroy guest experience, and to better serve travelers the brand has established three unique hotel categories consisting of the Icon Collection composed of unparalleled properties furnishing lavish experiences, the Lifestyle Series offering energizing stays in vibrant locales, and Urban Retreats based in bold, eccentric cities. Viceroy's portfolio of hotels and resorts can be found in a diverse array of breathtaking and inspiring destinations, including Los Cabos, Santa Monica, Chicago, Beverly Hills, Riviera Maya, Snowmass, San Francisco, Washington D.C. and St. Lucia. In 2020, the brand expanded to D.C. with the opening of the Viceroy Washington DC and Hotel Zena (Washington D.C.), and Viceroy is growing its international portfolio with the recent opening of Viceroy Kopaonik Serbia and looking ahead with Viceroy at Ombria Resort Algarve (Portugal) in 2023 and Viceroy Bocas Del Toro Panama in 2024. Additionally, Viceroy was named in the top ten of 'Top 25 Hotel Brands' on Travel + Leisure World's Best Awards 2022. Viceroy for Everyone, Viceroy's ongoing commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion to its colleagues and guests can be found at www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/about-us/diversity-equity-inclusion.Viceroy is a member of the Global Hotel Alliance (GHA) DISCOVERY, a unique loyalty program offering exclusive benefits and experiences to its members at over 800 hotels around the world. For more information, visit www.viceroyhotelsandresorts.com. Follow Viceroy on Facebook and Instagram.

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