Budget prod­ucts to ben­e­fit agents

In­creased num­bers of cor­po­rate and leisure trav­ellers are tak­ing to the skies, par­tic­u­larly in In­dia, China and In­done­sia where de­mo­graphic changes are cre­at­ing mas­sive do­mes­tic and in­ter­na­tional de­mand. In an in­ter­view with , Jeet Sawh­ney, MD, Aba­cus Dis

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Ac­cord­ing to Sawh­ney, dereg­u­la­tion and the ex­pan­sion of many low-cost car­ri­ers are pre­sent­ing new op­por­tu­ni­ties for all. He pointed out that In­dia is the sec­ond­fastest grow­ing air mar­ket in Asia-Pa­cific af­ter In­done­sia. The In­dian on­line air mar­ket is ex­pected to ex­pand by 62 per cent to $6.6 bil­lion by 2015, rep­re­sent­ing 53 per cent of the

Mo­bile travel tech­nol­ogy in par­tic­u­lar is en­abling sup­pli­ers to reach Tier-II and Tier-III cities for growth

coun­try’s to­tal air mar­ket. “The re­sult is a bur­geon­ing dis­tri­bu­tion grid for travel tech­nol­ogy sup­pli­ers like Aba­cus and the travel agents we serve,” he said.

In his opin­ion, mo­bile travel tech­nol­ogy in par­tic­u­lar is en­abling sup­pli­ers to reach TierII and Tier-III cities for growth. At these lo­ca­tions, branded prod­ucts, lo­cal tour agencies as well as on­line por­tals will do ex­ceed­ingly well. “Na­tional tourism or­gan­i­sa­tions have un­der­stood the im­por­tance of these do­mes­tic feeder mar­kets and are spend­ing more on state and provin­cial mar­ket­ing,” Sawh­ney un­der­lined.

He also as­serted that multi-na­tional OTAs also are likely to reap ben­e­fits in draw­ing traf­fic from new mar­kets too, be­cause of Aba­cus Cus­tomer Via.com’s ex­pan­sion across Asia. Ac­cord­ing to him, OTA pen­e­tra­tion of the to­tal travel mar­ket presently is high­est in the re­gion in In­dia. “In­bound tour oper­a­tors are also look­ing good for 2014, at­tract­ing busi­ness on­line from over­seas,” he added.

Aba­cus’ strat­egy is to deliver world-class tech­nol­ogy to In­dia’s ma­jor travel tech­nol- ogy brands and to de­velop sec­ond-tier agencies so that they also ma­ture and thrive. “Es­sen­tially, we help travel oper­a­tors at­tract new cus­tomers and scale their busi­ness with su­pe­rior point-of- sale, mid and back-of­fice so­lu­tions,” he em­pha­sised.

“In view of the fact that trav­ellers are in­creas­ingly turn­ing to so­lu­tions such as 3G and wire­less broad­band for mo­bile

con­tent, Aba­cus is the first GDS to in­tro­duce mo­bile so­lu­tions for travel agents, with per­son­alised web-based and wire­less tech­nol­ogy,” Sawh­ney added.

Com­ment­ing on the yield man­age­ment for cus­tomers dur­ing tough times, he said, “Re­duc­ing costs and mak­ing our agent cus­tomers more prof­itable is our pri­mary goal. For ex­am­ple, Aba­cus WorkSpace in­cludes a low fare search ca­pa­bil­ity that al­lows users to present the best avail­able fare in­stantly.” Aba­cus also has a sin­gle PoS (Point of Sale) ac­cess to shop and book mul­ti­ple types of con­tent, such as air in­sur­ance and ho­tels.

Aba­cus has wide port­fo­lio of budget air­lines in Asia/Pa­cific, many of which have their sights set on the In­dian out­bound mar­ket. Fold­ing in more do­mes­tic ho­tel con­tent is also a pri­or­ity to max­imise cross-sell­ing and upselling po­ten­tial for agents look­ing to strengthen their yields and bot­tom lines.

Jeet Sawh­ney Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Aba­cus Dis­tri­bu­tion Sys­tems (In­dia)

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