Turns out the new kids could use some help from an experienced industry exec.
Crandall served as an exec of the now-bankrupt airline for 25 years before retiring in 1998. He created the industry’s first frequent flyer program (AAdanvtage) and its first Super Saver program, which offers discounts on advance-purchase tickets.
Even more pertinent to Hipmunk’s goals, Crandall was instrumental in creating Sabre, the computer reservations systems that gave travel agents the ability to book airline tickets in an automated fashion.
Crandall’s expertise will bring a deep industry-wide perspective to the company’s business strategy; one that many startups would love to access. His involvement also gives Hipmunk a boost in industry credibility and provides it with some key connections to major airlines as Hipmunk builds out its flight search functionality.
Adam Goldstein, co-founder and CEO of Hipmunk, says he is most looking forward to working with Crandall because “Bob will be able to help us think about both sides of the value we’re creating–both for customers and suppliers–from a unique perspective. Bob has many, many years of operational and finance experience which will help as we look to expand our business.”
Below is a copy of the press release: