Arrivedo CEO, Alonso Franco, pitched in front of industry leaders from APEC region on September 14th in Shanghai, China. Claiming second place amongst four other competitors, the opportunity has opened new doors to collaborate and partner with several companies from a global, ever changing market.
Sponsored by over 60 companies including major names like Facebook and Google, the main theme of this year’s conference was titled, “Breaking Through in a New Era.” In other words, how can startup companies breakthrough or better emerge amidst the travel and technology industry while also helping to improve it with new age ideas? Following this topic, Franco presented the Arrivedo platform across a panel of several judges.
“As a hotelier, I understand how hotels are feeling about the problem of Airbnb. Being selected as a finalist, this has prepared me to learn how hotels in Asia are suffering from new players, which in China is more about Tujia instead of Airbnb,” said Franco.
Who are the major players in China’s travel industry?
Created in 2011 by cofounder Melissa Yang, Tujia is now the leading travel service platform in China. With over 400,000 listings, the Chinese website is far beyond the Americas. In comparison to Airbnb’s 80,000 listings, the American market has a long way to go in terms of marketing and product strategy.
“China is clearly in forefront of travel technology development, and they have their own agenda of technology development as well. Their entrepreneurs have a unique understanding of their market, which make it very hard for other players to enter without the right partners,” said Arrivedo’s CEO.
However, the panel of judges and audience were impressed with the simplicity of Arrivedo’s proposal. There was a common understanding of how Arrivedo’s hotel booking engine and Neighborhood Guide content could be popular both in destination and during the pre-booking process.
“Our presence is global, so we will maintain our strategy to focus growth in three strategic areas including Europe, United States and Latin America. But this doesn’t mean that hotels from other parts in the world can’t join. We are seeing organic growth of hotels claiming their profile organically in cities like Bangkok, Tanzania, and Mexico City,” said Franco.
In terms of Arrivedo’s emergence in China and the Asian market overall, Franco believes that strategic partnerships are in order to maintain a healthy growth within the country’s technology industry. The experience at the 2017 TravelDaily Conference has certainly opened up many potential opportunities to do just this.
What about potential language barriers?
As Arrivedo’s content is produced in English, this year’s experience in China has emerged the idea of integrating translation capabilities into the platform. Inspired by competitor Lei Guan, CEO of Babel Technology’s presentation of AI translating ability, Franco believes that the Arrivedo team’s technology will be advancing sooner than they think in relation to replicating current hotel content into any language as requested by a user.
“We might be able to squeeze this development in for 2018,” says Franco.
For more information about Arrivedo and the other competitors of the 2017 TravelDaily Conference, check out the full article here on ChinaTravelNews.