Africa: a lion on the move

Vicente Bosque

Commercial Director, Business Travel, Africa, Amadeus

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Africa is often an overlooked continent, but businesses are beginning to change its perception and see the region as a land of opportunity and prosperity. According to Africa’s Business Revolution report by McKinsey & Company, global business leaders who misunderstand Africa run the risk of missing out on one of the century’s greatest growth opportunities.

Africa’s current population is around 1.2 billion and is projected to double over the next 30 years, making it an exception in a world of slowing population growth. It will soon be the fastest-urbanizing region in the world, with emerging business travel spends, and is expected to outgrow global counterparts.

How Amadeus is working with agencies to spice up their business

At Amadeus, we see two key growth opportunities for business travel agencies in Africa. First, investing in online self-booking tools to deliver more value to corporations and better experience to business travelers. Second, diversify beyond air and leverage the potential  of hotel bookings.

So, to discuss these growth opportunities and trends in more detail and based on a theme of ‘Spice Up Your Business’, we hosted some of our business travel agency (BTA) customers in breathtaking Zanzibar, Africa. These were some of the key takeaways:

  1. The future of business travel
    Business travelers are increasingly expecting personalized experiences through new and innovative technology. Business travel agencies have an opportunity to positively impact this traveler experience with the right content and interfaces at their fingertips.

  2. Travel content distribution disruption
    Today, differentiation, personalization and retailing with servicing are key. Both airlines and BTAs are evolving the way they create, distribute and sell their offers. New technology standards like NDC can not only help them differentiate but also bring revenue opportunities to the entire value chain. 

  3. Growing revenue with hotels made simpler and more rewarding
    With the hospitality sector consolidating and tapping multiple distribution channels, it’s key for BTAs to offer hotel and accommodation options within their portfolio. It’ll not only increase revenues and margins by selling new services but positively impact the traveler experience thanks to a more integrated itinerary.

  4. The gold rush to online
    A digitalized travel economy means more self-service online bookings. It’s vital for BTAs to service travelers on their preferred mobile devices, so they can get end-to-end service with the click of a button. Business travel agencies can help corporations and travelers do this with the right technology partner.

  5. Transforming tomorrow’s travel & preparing for it today
    With the technology industry quickly evolving, multiple technologies are emerging including the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning. Amadeus is actively understanding how these will increasingly impact travel and what value they will bring to the travel ecosystem. We believe that innovation is about doing things differently. So, working together with our customers is crucial to ensure we deploy the right technology that meets current needs and is ready to fulfill future expectations. 

Spice up business travel with Amadeus

Next-generation technology can take businesses to the next level. For BTAs to survive and thrive, they are constantly reinventing themselves and leveraging new technology to their advantage. In Africa, BTAs are already investing in online self-booking tools to create additional value to their customers and diversify beyond air to take advantage of the hotel bookings potential.

At the core of our technology is the Amadeus Travel Platform that allows access to any content, from any source, through any channel – all to create higher value for BTA customers. It helps BTAs to personalize the right offer for each traveler and optimize every trip. This is all part of our mission to create a Live Travel Space where BTAs can flourish and build better journeys for travelers around the world.

With strong partners and a collaborative approach, we can all capitalize on opportunities in the current transforming business environment. We’re here to support BTAs and help businesses grow, maximize revenue, optimize costs and excel in serving their customers.

So, as business travel in Africa gains momentum, this was the right time to get together with our customers to exchange on industry trends, the future of travel and latest technology. With a rich exchange and valuable networking, it was a great opportunity to reconnect with everyone. At Amadeus, we believe we’re best positioned to support their business growth in this dynamic environment. 

Find out more about how we’re spicing up the business travel agency business here.


Travel sellers, Live Travel Space, Travel Search, Africa, Business Travel