Skift + Amadeus: 5 Takeaways for Startups Building the Future of Travel
SKIFT + AMADEUS PRESENT
THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL:
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BUILDING THE FUTURE OF TRAVEL:
5 TAKEAWAYS FOR STARTUPS
he travel industry’s landscape is changing by way of innovation and disrup-
tion from the startup world. From new ways to approach flight shopping
to group bookings, concierge services to consumer media, we look across
sectors to uncover insights and learnings from founders and CEOs building the
travel companies of the future. This paper maps the entrepreneurial journey and
lays out essential takeaways for the travel startups of tomorrow.
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THE TAKEOFF IS AN ORIGINAL WEB SERIES FROM SKIFT AND AMADEUS,
EXPLORING THE STARTUP MINDSET AND WHAT IT TAKES TO BECOME A NEXT-LEVEL
INNOVATOR IN TRAVEL. CHECK IT OUT HERE.
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madeus is the leading global technology company for the travel industry that facilitates the
entire travel journey - from initial search to making a booking, from pricing to ticketing, from
managing reservations to managing the check-in and departure process.
Our products, solutions and world-class account management team help improve the business
performance of our customers: travel agencies, corporations, airlines, hotels, car rental companies,
airports, cruise lines, travel search companies and startups.
Amadeus has a long and successful track record and dedicated focus in advising and serving start-
ups and emerging travel companies. Recently Amadeus launched Amadeus for Startups a unique
program designed to equip travel startups in the North American marketplace with industry leading
technology, expertise and consultative support to navigate the complexities of the travel industry
and achieve success.
To find out more about Amadeus for Startups please visit www.amadeus.com, and www.amadeus.
ABOUT AMADEUS FOR STARTUPS
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About Amadeus 4
1. Have a Clear Answer to the Problem You are Solving 7
2. Stay Fanatically Focused on Your Customers 9
3. Shift from Player to Coach Mentality 11
4. Be Prepared to Adapt and Pivot 13
5. Assemble the Best Minds Possible 16
The Travel Startup Journey: From Innovation to Success 19
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Skift is a travel intelligence
company that offers news,
data, and services to pro-
fessionals in travel and pro-
fessional travelers, to help
them make smart decisions
Skift is the business
Visit skift.com for more.
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n recent years, travel startups have become the foreground for industry-wide innovation,
teeming with big funding rounds, high-profile acquisitions and numerous cases of young com-
panies changing the industry as we know it.
The obvious leaders, Uber and Airbnb, valued at $41 billion and $25.5 billion respectively, are cre-
ating and moving markets with such force that their incumbent counterparts are left in the wind.
They’ve effectively disrupted their sectors, and have drawn attention to the travel industry’s need
According to CB Insights’ Global Tech Exits Report, travel startups have experienced 106% in exit
growth year-over-year over the last two years, and in 2014, global mergers and acquisitions in
tourism more than doubled in value. Looking forward, Oxford Economics forecasts that the travel
industry will grow 5.4 percent annually in the next 10 years, 2 percent higher than the global GDP is
forecasted to grow. The future is bright for travel tech startups.
This isn’t to say that it will be easy for young companies. While the digital era has lowered the barrier
of entry for travel startups, there is still the immense challenge to disrupt this increasingly complex,
constantly shifting industry and become a key player.
Skift and Amadeus spoke with startup founders, CEOs and industry partners from across travel sec-
tors in The Takeoff video series. The following insights are taken from these interviews, along with
additional reporting, on what it takes to build the travel brand of the future.