Get in touch


Aviation & Travel

True Innovation Comes Outside The Cabin

One of the biggest emerging trends I have seen in the airline sector over the last couple of years is the concept of passenger self-serve onboard or order to seat. Despite the almost constant discussion at every industry event, the funny thing is, this isn’t really new at all – almost 10 years ago, a former CEO of an onboard retail technology provider proclaimed: “Over time the duty free model will shift to 100% passenger self-service transactions. One of the biggest reasons being the fact that the trolley only comes down the aisle once a journey, for half an hour – in essence the duty free store is only open for half an hour. If I can make transactions myself, through self-service technology, the store is open for the entire flight.” And yet, a decade later, this isn’t even close to the reality on-board most aircraft. During the pandemic, with the need for social distancing, coupled with a desire for innovation, self-service again bubbled to the fore – it gained a new level of relevance. With passengers across all demographics accustomed to ordering everything from groceries to new cars via their phones, digital transactions onboard an aircraft look to be a natural extension of what has become an everyday digital experience. The aviation sector is obsessed (but occasionally intimidated) by digital answers, and there is much that can already be done. Making a digital store available for browsing and even purchasing is achievable, both on IFE and passengers own devices. The process raises a number of operational implications, such as how crew learn of and deliver orders, how payments are handled (particularly if there is no air-to-ground connection) and how this sits alongside the existing cabin service. All of these issues require significant thought and, in some cases investment; and there lies the heart of the problem.

Aviation & Travel

Omnevo Turns 2 and Looks to 2023

As we enter 2023 - and with a collective sigh of relief say goodbye to a frustrating 2022 – the global travel industry carries raised hopes for a full recovery and regaining the benchmark performance heights of 2019. I would like to wish you all success in 2023, which I think will be a hugely influential year for the future success of the mobility sector. This week marks the second anniversary of the launch of Omnevo, a company created in the midst of the biggest crisis ever seen in the travel sector. That timing wasn’t unfortunate or accidental; it was deliberate. The crisis radically transformed the industry’s challenges and demanded a new type of response. The unprecedented pressures and shifts in the market inspired Omnevo’s reaction; the development of a unique, end-to-end, digital marketplace solution for airlines, airports, and rail operators. A year later, and despite the frustration of the unevenness of recovery in 2022, we are all thankful that the industry’s situation has advanced well beyond the peak impact of the global crisis - and we’re a year closer to driving the industry back up to its pre-COVID performance benchmarks. Across all transport sectors, we are now seeing forward-thinking operators responding digitally to passengers’ unrelenting demands for stronger experiences and - whether its F&B, Retail, services, or other ancillaries - the passenger wants that experience in the palm of their hands, on their mobiles and laptops, and available at every step of the journey. The 2023 recovery will be dominated by the operators who deliver these passenger needs, seizing the digital advantage. The travel sector’s post-crisis recovery is already well underway and more airlines and airports are positioning their businesses digitally to enhance the passenger experience, raise operational efficiencies (including major sustainability gains), and increase revenue and profitability. These operators are strategically placed to seize major competitive advantages as the recovery accelerates in the coming months. In fact, Omnevo now has ten fully-implemented live customer platforms - including Singapore's KrisShop, Sky Express, Frankfurt Airport, Auckland Airport, and Air Europa – and already a further five major platforms well advanced for implementation in 2023. Travelers are determined to make 2023 the year they forget the COVID era and make up for the lost journeys, the time wasted, and the experiences missed.  When they travel the world again, they will bring with them demands for higher standards of customer experiences and expanded options in services, Food & Beverage, and Retail – and they want these experiences to be digitally powered. At Omnevo, we will continue to support the industry’s leaders by continually innovating and enhancing our platforms, further expanding our team (which grew by 50% in 2022) and developing additional services and options for our clients. In one way, 2023 will be like any other year. From energy prices to regional conflicts, from supply chains to surprise events, the industry will undoubtedly face remarkable pressures. However, the key difference today is that the impact of the COVID crisis is receding rapidly and major opportunities are growing right in front of us, opportunities that can be realized by the airlines, airports, and rail operators who  give the traveler the new standard of experience they demand - and deserve. From myself and the Omnevo team, I hope that the year ahead is a huge success for you and for the whole industry, and I hope I have the opportunity to meet you in 2023.

Aviation & Travel

RFPs and RFIs: Making a list and checking it twice…

It's Christmas, and everywhere children are sending their wish lists to Santa, hoping that all their dreams come true on the 25th. It’s been a while since I stopped sending my own wish list to the North Pole, but I do get the pleasure of seeing the adult equivalent in my working like in the form of RFPs and RFIs, and I am always delighted when Omnevo is invited to participate in these processes. I look at the list of what’s wanted, but rather than figuring out if you’ve been naughty or nice, I have the job of working out what can be delivered and when. I usually find that I can say ‘yes’ to most things on the wish list, but sometimes there are dreams that are beyond today’s reality. Pre-order for onboard or home delivery? – no problem. Onboard retail, both via POS and IFE – absolutely. Accept Bitcoin for onboard retail payments in an offline environment? - not yet ! Working in sales, I love receiving RFPs and RFIs and always view it as a chance to give an honest insight into what we can do, our view on the market, and how we can collaborate with potential clients. However, many in the industry regard the whole RFP process as outdated and bad for supplier businesses, particularly when it becomes a race to the bottom in terms of commercials. We see situations where suppliers who may have exactly the experience you need to deliver the project are priced out of consideration, while inexperienced suppliers may make claims they cannot deliver, simply to win the work. On more than one occasion I’ve seen clients select a lower cost supplier and then ultimately return to us to re-engage and start the project over. More positively, with an honest and collaborative approach, the RFP process can deliver the ideal merger of client ambition and supplier capabilities. These processes also give airlines a chance level the playing field, focusing on specific criteria to evaluate and benchmark all participants and find the most suitable supplier in an unbiased process. This works well if it includes a detailed and realistic assessment of what exactly is needed and can enable the development of the optimal platform and a winning outcome for both parties. At Omnevo, I’m always excited to see a wish list from a potential client and then work through the process of seeing how we can deliver it, including constantly innovating to tailor the platform to their needs. Like Santa, I always hope the wish list is realistic and I can make dreams come true! I hope you enjoy the holiday season and that your (realistic) wishes come true in 2023.