The big news that American Express Global Business Travel wants to acquire Hogg Robinson Group is still resonating across the industry.
The combined company would have the largest transaction volume of any travel management company in the world, catapulting it up into the level below consumer booking giants Expedia Inc. and Priceline Group. In my analysis below, you can find out what this means for the rest of the industry.
In other news, Airbnb will announce a new product line next week, and Skift has the scoop. While different than its “business travel ready” approved rooms, the new Airbnb Select product seems to be a good fit for business travelers.
— Andrew Sheivachman, Business Travel Editor
Business of Buying
American Express GBT Deal Means More Mergers Will Be Coming: American Express Global Business Travel is making a shrewd and expensive move to become the world’s biggest travel management company by a wide margin. More consolidation is almost certain to hit corporate travel as a result.
Gogo Wants U.S. Airlines to Know Satellite Wi-Fi Isn’t the Only Answer: For years, airline passengers have hated Gogo’s air-to-ground service. But change is coming, and travelers soon may not need to curse when they learn they’re on an air-to-ground-equipped airplane.
Carlson Rezidor Is Rebranding Itself as Radisson Hotel Group: Carlson Rezidor hasn’t taken advantage of its vast potential. This new name and strategy may help.
Norwegian Air CEO Admits the Discount Carrier Failed to Deliver in 2017: Industry insiders knew Norwegian Air was a “mess” last year, but the company kept downplaying its issues. Now, Norwegian has come clean, with its CEO saying, “2017 was not a good year.” But has it solved all of its problems? We doubt it.
Disruption + Innovation
Airbnb Is Set to Launch a New Tier of Select Properties: You know the saying, “The more things change, the more they stay the same”? When it comes to Airbnb’s new endeavors in the accommodations space, it is certainly being inventive, but the company is also borrowing heavily from what hotels have been doing for centuries.
Smart Hotel Guest Rooms Are Almost Here: The smart guest room of the future is still in development. A strong return on investment for hotel owners who invest in updated technology, however, will help push these innovations into the mainstream.
American Airlines Is Not Prioritizing Launching Very Long Flights: You might find the customer experience to be the most interesting aspect of an airline. But real aviation nerds obsess over airline schedules — where an airline flies, when, and with what plane.
Skift Business Travel Editor Andrew Sheivachman [firstname.lastname@example.org] curates the Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.