Redefining the end-to-end passenger experience | Independent news and events

Digital & Innovation Conference

No industry event does more to inspire, engage and connect its participants

10-12 September 2018 Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas

Supporting Partner:

Supporting Partner:



Strategic Partner

Strategic Partner panasonic

Supporting Partner

FTE global Supporting Partner AAAE

Supporting Partner

FTE global Supporting Partner ACC Airports Consultants Council

Supporting Partner

FTE global Supporting Partner Airport Terminal Of The Future

Supporting Partner

Jet blue partner fte global

Platinum Sponsor

FTE global platinum sponsor hamad international airport

Platinum Sponsor

FTE global Platinum sponsor rockwell-collins

Gold Sponsor

FTE global gold sponsor Airport Lounge Development

Gold Sponsor

FTE global gold sponsor inmarsat

Gold Sponsor

FTE global gold sponsor Mindtree

Gold Sponsor

FTE global gold sponsor ses-networks

Gold Sponsor

FTE global gold sponsor Volantio

Digital & Innovation Conference

The new Digital & Innovation Conference will help airlines, airports and their partners get to grips with the new and emerging technologies and trends that are redefining the industry. As stakeholders battle to understand how to take advantage of all of these new developments, this conference will provide much-needed guidance and exclusive insight from experts at the forefront of innovation. Attendees will hear from forward-thinking corporates, airline/airport innovation labs, and pioneering startups.

FTE Global 2017 keynotes included:


The 2018 conference agendas are currently being developed. Meanwhile, please find below the 2017 conference programme, which provides insight into the quality of the speakers and the key areas of focus.

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2017 Agenda

Tuesday 5th September 17:30 - 21:00

Technovation Center Tours

Begin your FTE Global experience with Technovation, NEC, and Microsoft at their “Glimpse of the Future” event to see live demos around industry trends in the travel industry. Enjoy food and drink while you learn more about their “curb to gate” solutions, facial ID and security solutions, passenger experience solutions as well as a range of airline and airport management, operations and transport solutions including AI and VR. It will be an evening of fun, education and networking with leaders in these areas.

Wednesday 6th September - Day 1

09:15 - 10:15

Networking Ice Breaker & Coffee

Room 2

Speaker Invited

Wednesday 6th September 10:30 - 12:00

Opening Keynote Session

Room 1


Daniel Coleman
Future Travel Experience

Welcome from the host

Samuel Ingalls
Assistant Director of Aviation, Information Systems
McCarran International Airport

Inspirational Keynotes

How will Hyperloop change travel forever, and will it replace or complement existing modes of travel?

Dirk Ahlborn
JumpStarter Inc & Hyperloop Transportation Technologies, Inc

ANA’s endeavour to redefine its business to impact all 7 billion people on Earth

Kevin Kajitani
Digital Design Lab
ANA Holdings & ANA Avatar XPRIZE Visioneers Team
Akira Fukabori
Market Communication
All Nippon Airways & ANA Avatar XPRIZE Visioneers Team

12:00 - 13:30
Official exhibition opening, lunch break and networking on the exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Wednesday 6th September 13:30 - 15:00

The future according to the disruptors

Second Working Session (Room 1)

 A holistic vision of the future of travel and the very real impacts that today’s seemingly “futuristic” concepts will have on the air transport industry

This session will bring together a panel of visionaries charged with defining the future of travel and transportation. Each member of the panel will explore how their organisation plans to redefine travel over the course of next decade. Following this, the speakers will participate in an interactive Q&A discussion in which they will explore what this means for the future of the air transport industry.


Garen Moreno
Director, Strategic Partnering
BMW Designworks & Host of Departure Unknown


Sandi Adam
Chief Marketer
Zunum Aero
Jason Chua
Project Executive
A³ by Airbus Group
Joshua Krall
CTO & Co-founder
Boom Supersonic
Amy Friedlander Hoffman
Head of Business Development & Experiential Marketing

Additional panelists

Samuel Ingalls
Assistant Director of Aviation, Information Systems
McCarran International Airport
Mohammad Gaber
Senior Director – Digital Strategy & Transformation
Air Canada

15:00 - 15:45
Coffee break

Speaker Invited

Wednesday 6th September 15:45 - 17:30

FTE Personalisation Symposium

Third Working Session (Room 1)

“Personalisation” has become a buzzword for airlines, airports and their partners, but how can they achieve real personalisation? This session will bring together the most forward-thinking organisations in this space to share insight into how ever-changing consumer habits and vast pools of data can be leveraged to deliver truly personalised customer experiences throughout the journey.


Following a series of presentations from personalisation pioneers, the session will open up to a panel discussion with industry figures to establish how travel protagonists can achieve more success with their personalisation efforts.

Topics to be covered

Digital personal assistants, chatbots, apps, big data, privacy, AI, Machine Learning


Jim Peters
Chief Technology Officer (CTO)


Towards a one to one experience

Brian Gross
VP Digital Innovation

To what extent will intelligent personal assistants impact the travel experience of the future?

Shane O'Flaherty
National Director of Hospitality and Travel

How is Sea-Tac exploring the use of voice recognition, beacons and game engine technology to drive unique personalised experiences through its terminals in the future?

David Wilson
Chief Aviation Technologist
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport – Port of Seattle

As a combination of tech-startup, e-commerce-platform and transportation company, FlixBus was able to establish Europe’s largest intercity bus network in 3 years. How central has digitization, and personalisation, been to its success?

Taimur H. Khan
GM Travel & Hospitality
Pierre Gourdain
GM Americas

Speaker Invited

Wednesday 6th September 17:30 - 19:00

FTE Global 2017 Networking Drinks on the Exhibition Floor

Sponsored by:
Rockwell Collins

Make the most of the vital networking opportunities provided at the FTE Global 2017 Welcome Drinks, where delegates can enjoy demonstrations in the exhibition and network with their peers over refreshments and bar snacks.

The Welcome Reception will begin early so participants have more scope to network outside of the official event proceedings.

View the photos from the Networking Drinks →


Thursday 7th September - Day 2

08:00 - 09:00
Breakfast, networking and exhibition showcase on exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 09:00 - 10:15

FTE "Labs and Start-Ups" Keynote Addresses

Room 3

Session Chairman:

Maksim Izmaylov
Travel Tech Con & Winding Tree


Pittsburgh International Airport is on an innovation drive and has partnered with tech innovator Plug and Play, who will identify and connect relevant start-up companies looking to market the latest technology that fits with the airports goals. From a leadership perspective, was working with startups essential to achieving innovation, and how do you go about creating an innovation culture within an airport campus?

Christina Cassotis
Pittsburgh International Airport

KLM’S mission is to become the most innovative, customer-centric and efficient European airline. Central to this effort is its X initiative – a co-creation platform where ideas can be conjured up, prototyped rapidly and tested in live environments in a matter of days. What was the story behind, and successes, of the X-Flights, X-Gates and X-Hangar projects, and where will KLM focus its energies next?

Sander Stomph
Director ODS (Design Doing & Data Science)
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
Christine De Lille
Professor Innovation Networks

10:15 - 11:00
Coffee break on the exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 11:00 - 12:30

Workshop & Co-Creation Session for Labs & Start-Ups audience

Fourth working session (Room 4)


Co-creation the KLM way

Sander Stomph
Director ODS (Design Doing & Data Science)
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
Christine De Lille
Professor Innovation Networks

12:30 - 13:45
Lunch break on the exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 13:45 - 14:10

Post-lunch Keynote for all conference delegates

Room 1


Disruption is imminent – how your organisation must adapt to survive and thrive in tomorrow’s new travel eco-system

Nawal K. Taneja
Nawal K. Taneja
Airline Business Strategist
Published Airline Business Author

Nawal Taneja, whose experience in the aviation industry spans almost five decades, has worked for and advised major airlines and related businesses worldwide. His experience also includes the presidency of a small airline and an air transportation consultancy.

He advises senior executives in airlines, airports and related businesses as well as senior government policy makers.

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 14:10 - 15:30

Innovation & Digital Transformation Fireside Chat

Fifth Working Session (Room 4)


Led by a facilitator, this frank and open discussion (without slides) will bring together the drivers behind the innovation initiatives of some of the biggest players in the airline and airport space to share their experiences and views on how to build innovation projects for the future. What are the different approaches you can take, and what are some of the successes and lessons from these efforts that others can learn from?


Maksim Izmaylov
Travel Tech Con & Winding Tree

Roundtable panellists:

Rachel Walker
Director of Tools and Technology for Global Operations, Strategy, Planning & Design
United Airlines
Max Coppin
Partner Development Manager
Cathal Corcoran
Chief Information Officer (CIO)
Gatwick Airport

15:30 - 16:15
Coffee break on the exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 16:15 - 17:30

What are airline and airport labs cooking up for the future, and how are they going about it?

Sixth Working Session (Room 3)


Following scene setting presentations from each speaker the session will move to a fast-moving panel discussion led by the Chairman.


Gustavo Pina
Director of SITA Labs


Rick Belliotti
Director of Innovation and Small Business Development
San Diego International Airport
Bonny Simi
JetBlue Technology Ventures
Brian Gross
VP Digital Innovation
David Wilson
Chief Aviation Technologist
Seattle-Tacoma International Airport – Port of Seattle

Challenges and opportunities to be debated:

  • Considering a business case for a lab – in-house innovation lab vs incubator/accelerator
  • Establishing a lab – model, resourcing, facilities, culture, targets
  • Engaging with start-ups, and not stifling them with corporate mindsets/approaches
  • Engaging with incubators and accelerators
  • Identifying which technologies and trends to focus on
  • Establishing agile working practices and new working methods
  • Co-creation, hackathon and collaboration efforts
  • Ensuring innovation occurs across the organisation, and not just in the lab
  • Taking ideas from ideation to permanent implementation
  • Should Labs be designing and manufacturing products, or should that be left to suppliers?

Speaker Invited

Thursday 7th September 19:30 - 22:30

Gala Evening and FTE Awards Ceremony


Hosted by:

Sponsored by:
Rockwell Collins

Hosted by McCarran International Airport and sponsored by Rockwell Collins, we can guarantee you a memorable evening with the finest food, drink and entertainment that Las Vegas has to offer at the FTE Global 2017 Gala Party.

The event will be this year’s premiere networking event, providing a perfect opportunity to unwind and network with fellow attendees in a relaxed environment. The evening will take place on the terrace of one of Vegas’ hottest nightspots – Omnia at Ceasars Palace, and will also play host to the Future Travel Experience Awards 2017 ceremony. This incredible outdoor venue, with unrivalled views, is at the center of one of the world’s most famous streets, overlooking the action of the famed Las Vegas Strip.

The social and networking events are open to all FTE Global delegates.

View the photos from the Gala Evening and Awards →


Friday 8th September - Day 3

08:00 - 09:00
Breakfast, networking and exhibition showcase on exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Friday 8th September 09:00 - 10:00

Day 3 Keynote

Room 1


The Trends Driving the Future of Transportation: The Start-up Perspective

François Chopard
CEO and Founder
Starburst Accelerator

What can air transport stakeholders learn from MGM Resorts International about delivering a guest experience to remember, and what more could be done between hospitality and air transport stakeholders to create more seamless and innovative end-to-end travel experiences?

Joyen Vakil
SVP of Design & Development
MGM Resorts International

10:00 - 10:30
Coffee break on the exhibition floor

Speaker Invited

Friday 8th September 10:30 - 12:00

Co-Creation joint sessions with “On the Ground”, “Up in the Air”,“Terminal Design” and "Labs and Startup" tracks.

Seventh Working Session


Working Groups:

What aspects of the end-to-end customer experience should be powered by digital, and which ones should get the human touch?

David van Dongen
Manager Customer Experience
Christine De Lille
Professor Innovation Networks

Enabling Seamless Airport Security and Facilitation

Interactive session with DHS leadership and industry experts on key elements of the seamless passenger security experience including the checkpoint of the future, international processing, and the data sharing between airlines, airports, and government that makes it possible.


Chris Runde
Director, Airport Innovation Accelerator
T.J. Schulz
Airport Consultants Council

Subject Matter Experts:

John Wagner
Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Office of Field Operations
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
Arun Vemury
Director, Apex Air Entry Exit Re-engineering
US Department of Homeland Security
Steve Karoly
Assistant Administrator - Acting (SES), Office of Requirements and Capabilities Analysis
Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
Pierre Charbonneau
Director, Passenger
International Air Transport Association (IATA)

Session Overview:

This will be a facilitated, interactive session where participants will be asked to engage and provide suggestions on strategies to improve passenger facilitation and security at airports. The session will start with a 5-minute overview provided by the four government and international experts that will cover various programs and initiatives underway to improve security. After the briefings, the bulk of the session will consist of attendees breaking out into four stations in the room. Each station will cover various points in the passenger’s journey through the airport:

  • Curbside: (effects of TNCs; public area security vulnerabilities and considerations)
  • Check In: (how to improve security and push the checkpoint further out into the terminal)
  • Checkpoint: (technologies/capabilities/data needed to improve checkpoint performance)
  • Post-Security/Gate: (securing the secure side; communication and emergency plans; automatic gates)

Each station will have a facilitator to ask leading questions and capture notes regarding suggestions. The aim is to have 10 minutes of discussion at each station, then 2 minutes to rotate over to the next station. Each participant will provide input on the four topics. At the end of the hour, each station will report out on common themes/recommendations.

Understanding Blockchain – what exactly can it do, and not do, for travel?

Maksim Izmaylov
Travel Tech Con & Winding Tree

More working groups to be announced soon.

Friday 8th September 12:00
Conference close

Speaker Invited

Friday 8th September 12:45 - 14:00

McCarran International Airport tours

A showcase of passenger experience and design excellence – guided tours of Las Vegas McCarran International Airport T3 will start kerbside and work through the terminal and onto the apron.

View the photos from the tour →


Travel & Accommodation

The Mandalay Bay Resort

10-12 September 2018, Las Vegas, United States

The Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas is the venue for FTE Global 2018, and offers unmatched luxury, fine dining, renowned entertainment, personal service and gaming excitement.

Full Travel & Accommodation Details

Why attend FTE Global 2018?

Don’t just take our word for it – read what FTE Global 2017 attendees had to say about the show.

“FTE Global was fantastic! It’s very inspirational and it opens the stage for a lot of collaboration and building the future of travel. I was very impressed by the exhibition this year. The diversity of the products and what could be built with the technology that was featured is really a new world.”

Liliana Petrova, Customer Experience Director, JetBlue Airways

“FTE is one of my favourite conferences to go to. I like the fact that you bring in both airlines and airports, and the content is really different. I also enjoy that you bring in different speakers from other industries. I’m a “future” guy and this is a really good place to be. It’s fun because we’re all on the same page – we’re all looking for future technology.”

David Wilson, Director, Airport Innovation, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, Port of Seattle

“The thing that’s really cool about this conference is most industry conferences just focus on tomorrow. With this one, people take a step back, are willing to consider new ideas, and think about the next 5, 10, 15 years.”

Jason Chua, Project Executive, A³ by Airbus Group

“I’ve been quite amazed by the quality of people that I was able to meet from the airline and airport communities, and also from the different innovative suppliers that were showcasing their latest innovations. For start-ups it’s a great event.”

François Chopard, CEO and Founder, Starburst Accelerator

“The networking opportunities are always fantastic at FTE Global. There has been a high level of interaction and engagement between delegates.”

Rick Belliotti, Director Innovation & Small Business Development, San Diego International Airport

“It is excellent to have the ‘Up in the Air’ stream. The conferences are definitely addressing the right issues. You hear about ideas, visions and aspirations – there is big value to attending FTE Global.”

Dr. Joachim Schneider, Vice President Product Management, Lufthansa

“FTE Global is a wonderful event. I have met representatives from many different modes of travel, and heard what people need to think about in the next decades. In terms of networking, the right players are here to have conversations with.”

Zachary Matthews, Senior Regional Manager, Business Development and Operations, US and Canada, Uber

“I have particularly liked that the event helps from a strategic standpoint. FTE Global really allows for a holistic strategic mind-set. The conference sessions have been very relevant in terms of customer experience.”

Michael Morford, Airport Concessions Manager, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport

“It’s great that we’re hearing about disruption. Blurring the lines between industries is very important, and this event does that very effectively.”

Rachel Walker, Director – Tools & Technology Global Ops, Strategy, Planning & Design, United Airlines

“I have been very happy with the conference sessions, which have been projecting us into the future. It’s my first time here at FTE Global and it has exceeded my expectations. I have met lots of different contacts – the event is very good for networking.”

Aymeric Dussart, IT Director, Aéroports de Montréal

“The panel sessions have been excellent, with good interaction with the audience. It’s a very forward-thinking event and people here are not afraid to talk about the future.”

Joshua Krall, Chief Technology Officer and Co-Founder, Boom Supersonic

“I’d heard a lot about FTE Global from industry colleagues and it has certainly met my expectations. The conference sessions have been very interesting, and it has been my pleasure to take part.”

Christoph Rufenacht, Director Capital Facilities Development, Vancouver Airport Authority

“FTE Global was definitely a great opportunity for us to network and to learn from all the players that are changing the airline industry and the travel industry. During three days we were exposed to lots of insights and we were exposed to a broader way of approaching our business.”

Alessandro Fusaro, Coordinator Digital Marketing & Innovation, SkyTeam

“It has been great attending FTE Global. The conference sessions have really informed our thinking and the Co-creation Forums were particularly good in generating a high level of interaction. FTE Global is highly recommended – I will definitely attend again.”

Max Coppin, Partner Development Manager, Google

“The event has been very insightful. I’ve been to a lot of conferences, and the knowledge gained at FTE Global is unique and innovative. It’s very good that the event is all about collaboration. I will take some nice concepts home with me.”

Maria Rosario C. Jocson, Assistant Vice President, Centre for Customer Management, Marketing Department, Philippine Airlines

“There are very few events where airlines can get together and talk about what they’re doing. Here at FTE Global, we are able to hear in detail the experiences of others.”

Tim Graham, Senior Manager – Integration, Development & Innovation, Virgin Atlantic Airways

Vital Event Information

Future Travel Experience Global 2018 is an independent global forum that brings together airlines, airports, government agencies, vendors, start-ups, terminal designers, architects, ground handlers, destination partners and various other travel industry stakeholders to define tomorrow’s end-to-end passenger experience.

Future Travel Experience Global 2018
- September 2018
Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas, United States

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