Hotel reshopping engines, a community homestay network and a mobility analytics specialist have won the Front Runners Travel Tech Competition for startups, taking place at this year’s WTM London.
The start-up competition and summit is a collaboration between WTM London, sister show Travel Forward and the World Tourism Forum Lucerne (WTFL), with the support of Amadeus.
Start-ups from around the globe, operating in three clearly-defined areas, were invited to pitch for the event earlier this year. From 450 entries, nine shortlisted businesses, three from each category, were invited to pitch their plans, live at WTM London in front of an international judging panel and audience of investors, industry leaders and innovators.
The three categories reflect some of the travel technology sector’s strongest use cases – the future of hospitality, experiences and smart mobility.
The hospitality category resulted in joint winners, both providing tools for hoteliers to increase revenue by exploiting the reshopping and rebooking opportunities which result from the price volatility of hotels. Hotelmize from the UK and Pruvo from Israel shared the spoils.
In the smart mobility category, the top slot went to Motiontag, a mobility analytics company helping to fight the climate emergency by providing green incentive programs and gamification options for smart cities.
The experiences winner was Nepal-based Community Homestay Network, which creates job opportunities and improves the livelihoods of locals by offering and promoting authentic local experiences.
All nine businesses on the shortlist will be added to the WTFL Dealflow Tool, which connects start-ups with potential investors.
As well as the pitches and awards ceremony, the Front Runners Travel Tech Summit featured sessions covering new business models of the future, the relationship between governments and tech startups and localisation.
Simon Press, Exhibition Director, WTM London and Travel Forward, said:
“We were over the moon to secure this partnership with WTFL and everything about the collaboration has exceeded expectations. There are many travel conferences which host start-up pitch competitions but I doubt if any of them get 450 entries from 80 countries.
“We really think Front Runners is different and is yet another example of how Travel Forward is differentiating its offer to the travel technology sector.”