Frankfurt, July 14th, 2021 - Omnevo, leading provider of revenue-increasing digital platform solutions for airports and airlines and part of the AOE Group, and Fraport AG, owner and operator of Germany's largest airport, announced today that Frankfurt Airport goes live with the latest advanced version of Omnevo's award-winning omnichannel e-commerce solution. Additionally, the two companies announced that they have extended their long-term partnership for another five years to further develop the digitalization of the airport's range of products and services for the almost 70 million passengers (before COVID-19) who travel through Frankfurt Airport each year.
With go-live, the existing digital solution platform, which Omnevo’s parent company (AOE) had originally developed for Fraport, was migrated to the latest Omnevo product version. Through its original partnership with AOE Fraport utilized the OM³ digital platform (now known as Omnevo) to become the world’s first omnichannel airport focused entirely on omnichannel both before and, especially, during the pandemic. The newly enhanced Omnevo cloud solution enables the operation of a complete airport marketplace solution for all travel retail sales at a fraction of the costs previously required for such a leading ecosystem, creating new revenue opportunities for crisis-hit airports of any size. Thanks to the highly flexible SaaS solution, Fraport has also effectively future-proofed its digital strategy by integrating directly in the Omnevo product roadmap, enabling it to benefit from Omnevo’s strategy of continuous improvements to the solution.
"We are delighted to share this new five-year agreement with Fraport to continue our future-oriented work in the implementation of a sustainable and profitable business model for the global travel retail sector, which we proudly pioneered with Fraport at Frankfurt Airport, in 2015, as our first airport customer," said Kian Gould, Founder and CEO of AOE and Chairman of Omnevo. "Fraport and Frankfurt Airport have since maintained their clear focus on the vision that originally motivated Fraport to digitalize its business model, namely, to transform stationary trade into an omnichannel travel retail and shopping hub, with the ultimate goal of serving passengers with relevant information, shopping options and services – all instantly available, in the right place, at the right time. Especially during the Corona crisis, which has led to an almost complete standstill for most of the travel industry for so many months, Fraport AG was able to continue generating sales through its digital marketplace solution while many other airports’ shops remained closed, inflicting huge losses in revenue."
Demonstrating the adaptability of the digital platform, the launch of the new Omnevo solution was marked by enabling online shopping to be temporarily opened to "non-flying guests" too. The purchases, including a program of online exclusive offers, are delivered free of charge throughout Germany. The versatility of the delivery fulfillment system has helped to completely compensate for the corona-related losses from the airport’s suspended Click & Collect business, securing Fraport vital revenues even in the midst of the global crisis.
"During the Corona crisis, Omnevo once again showed us how important a flexible digital marketplace solution and alternative sales channels really are in travel retail. We look forward to continuing to shape the next few years with Omnevo," said Jens Paul, Head of Retail | Digital at Fraport AG. "By continuing on our digital path, we are able to react much faster and more flexibly to unpredictable situations and dynamic market developments and to implement new digital business models."
Since the AOE Group began its digital journey together with Fraport in 2015 the solution has been continuously developed and, following the Frankfurt Airport launch, implemented at many other airports, such as Heathrow and Auckland. AOE Group's specialist aviation division has been operating under the name Omnevo since beginning of this year.
The Omnevo digital solution suite is ideally suited to both meet the current crisis challenges in the aviation and travel retail industry and to transform the industry's business models for travel retail, sales and in-flight services as well as fulfillment for the future.
A three-part series of blogs showing how LCCs of any size have a proven, low-cost entry option to seize the digital initiative in driving their ancillary revenue recovery.
After 20-months of Zoom sessions it was amazing to be out in the real world again this month, flying the globe and actually meeting industry colleagues in person! Following the World Aviation Festival (WAF) in London I moved on to Future Travel Experience (FTE) in Las Vegas and it was so encouraging to find that these two major industry events, 8,000 km apart, echoed the industry’s increasing buzz around the digitalization of ancillary revenue. Sadly, I’ve now been brought back to earth by the latest twist in the crisis as Omicron looks to inflict yet another challenging phase. However, after two years of disruption the aviation industry knows it has to adapt to each new challenge and strengthen its ability to respond just as long as governments finally realize that locking down borders is a very short-sighted approach (unless you are an island state) and haven’t stopped any of the previous 4 COVID waves in any meaningful way. If the last two years have taught us anything, it is that airlines, like governments, will need to think a lot more globally than locally.
December’s World Aviation Festival in London was a great opportunity to bring the industry together and, although attendance was inevitably lower than normal, there was a strong conference program that carried a mood of guarded optimism. Best of all, I was delighted to see just how strongly the focus was on real action to drive ancillary revenue and recovery. Much of 2021 has been spent waiting for a recovery to be established and many airlines have understandably been hesitant (or unable) to commit to new investment or major change in their customer operations. The long hoped-for recovery has been impossible to forecast accurately and many airlines opted to simply ‘hunker down’ and wait until a clearer path can be seen through the storm. That strategy carries deep risks. We now face a new phase of crisis as Omicron sadly develops its global presence but the fact is that the world will continue to turn, people will continue to travel, the crisis will eventually recede, and traffic will return. Airlines need to be preparing right now to create the customer experience that the recovery will demand. Yes, the picture of how the 2022 travel market will look in recovery is still blurred right now - but the key point is that we do already know exactly what the returning customer looks like and what they want. We have a clear understanding of the experience they want - and we have the digital tools to deliver that experience.