IAG, Fraport, Galeri AG and InterLnkd recognised in industry’s definitive innovation awards


Our best-ever Future Travel Experience event in Europe – the co-located FTE EMEA and FTE Ancillary & Retailing (Dublin, 11-13 June 2024) – concluded with the FTE Innovate Awards. These landmark awards are truly unique and are the industry’s definitive innovation platform. For the second time, airlines and airports competed head-to-head with their peers, shining a light on their latest innovation efforts. There were three awards categories: Air France, flydubai, International Airlines Group (IAG), Lufthansa Group, Qatar Airways, Turkish Airlines and Vueling Airlines were shortlisted for Most Innovative Airline Initiative; Aena, Aeroporti di Roma, Dubai Airports, Fraport, iGA Istanbul Airport and Schiphol Group were shortlisted for Most Innovative Airport Initiative; and Content Trip Solutions (Smartvel), Galeri AG and ZestIoT were shortlisted for Best New CX Concept. Each of the shortlisted entrants pitched on-stage in Dublin in an effort to impress our judges – Kevin Kleist, Head of Emerging Trends, Southwest Airlines; Linda Schucroft, Vice President of Innovation and Customer Experience, King Salman International Airport; and Manuel van Lijf, Director Aviation Innovation, nlmtd – and our audience, whose all-important votes decided who won. The ceremony also saw the presentation of the FTE EMEA Startup Innovation Award.

Most Innovative Airline Initiative – International Airlines Group

Daniel Coleman, Founder & CEO, Future Travel Experience; Manuel van Lijf, Director Aviation Innovation, nlmtd; Lisa Samways, Business Development Manager, IAG; Linda Schucroft, Vice President Innovation and Customer Experience, King Salman International Airport; Kevin Kleist, Head of Emerging Trends, Southwest Airlines; and Ryan Ghee, Chief Operating Officer, Future Travel Experience.

International Airlines Group (IAG) received the Most Innovative Airline Initiative award, which was collected by Lisa Samways, Business Development Manager, IAG, after delivering a pitch on the transformative EMU Mission Control initiative.

The initiative pulls together multiple data sources to drive better decision-making and deliver operational, customer, commercial and sustainability benefits in real time. From avoiding aircraft being unnecessarily held short of a stand resulting in excess fuel burn, through to making sure passengers with reduced mobility (PRMs) have a better experience, Mission Control is surfacing the right information at the right time to deliver improvements in operational efficiency, sustainability, customer experience, and commercial performance.

Most Innovative Airport Initiative – Fraport AG

Daniel Coleman, Founder & CEO, Future Travel Experience; Manuel van Lijf, Director Aviation Innovation, nlmtd; Nadine Ullsperger, Commercial Content Manager, Fraport AG; Johannes Noack, Product Manager eCommerce, Fraport AG; Linda Schucroft, Vice President Innovation and Customer Experience, King Salman International Airport; Kevin Kleist, Head of Emerging Trends, Southwest Airlines; and Ryan Ghee, Chief Operating Officer, Future Travel Experience.

Fraport was recognised for its digital Crewshop, with Johannes Noack, Product Manager eCommerce, Fraport AG, and Nadine Ullsperger, Commercial Content Manager, Fraport AG, collecting the Most Innovative Airport Initiative award.

In his pitch, Noack explained that the digital Crewshop enables employees to buy items from retailers located at the airport at particularly favourable conditions and pick them up onsite, with home delivery planned at a later date. With the Crewshop, Fraport is following the approach of a closed shopping community. In this way, it ensures that only employees can use the Crewshop. With the online store approach, it brings the items from the retailers located at the airport directly to the employees’ personal devices.

Best New CX Concept – Galeri AG

Daniel Coleman, Founder & CEO, Future Travel Experience; Manuel van Lijf, Director Aviation Innovation, nlmtd; Ajintha Pathmanathan, CEO, Galeri AG, and Barbara Bassi Modalek, Senior Biz Manager & Biz Developer, Galeri AG; Linda Schucroft, Vice President Innovation and Customer Experience, King Salman International Airport; Kevin Kleist, Head of Emerging Trends, Southwest Airlines; and Ryan Ghee, Chief Operating Officer, Future Travel Experience.

Ajintha Pathmanathan, CEO, Galeri AG, and Barbara Bassi Modalek, Senior Biz Manager & Biz Developer, Galeri AG, collected the Best New CX Concept award. Galeri AG was recognised for its innovative approach combining technology, entertainment, and mental health to revolutionise media consumption.

By integrating biofeedback sensors with immersive media, the initiative aims to empower users, providing personalised content recommendations based on users’ physiological and cognitive states. The concept of Galeri aims to redefine the airport experience with immersive XR technology. At the intersection of aviation and healthcare expertise, Galeri is distinct from other XR technologies, as it serves as an escape from the anxieties or boredom of airport travel and unlocks the future of personalised wellness. Galeri stands out as a transformative initiative that integrates cutting-edge technology with a focus on mental health and well-being.

FTE EMEA Startup Innovation Award – InterLnkd

Daniel Coleman, Founder & CEO, Future Travel Experience; Barry Klipp, CEO & Co-Founder, InterLnkd, and Robert Goldsmith, Chief Operating Officer, InterLnkd; and Ryan Ghee, Chief Operating Officer, Future Travel Experience.

InterLnkd was voted winner of the FTE EMEA Startup Innovation Award, which was collected by Barry Klipp, CEO & Co-Founder, InterLnkd, and Robert Goldsmith, Chief Operating Officer, InterLnkd. In the startup pitch session at the co-located FTE EMEA and FTE Ancillary & Retailing events, Klipp explained how airlines can earn from an untapped multi-billion-dollar ancillary opportunity. InterLnkd is the first company to link your booked customers with the worlds of fashion, beauty, and retail to complement the booking they hold with you, and to earn your business a completely new and cost-free ancillary revenue stream.


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