Flight Centre Travel Group Acquires YYZ-Based Umapped
Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw
The Flight Centre Travel Group (FLT) says it is fast-tracking its digital transformation through the acquisition of Umapped, a Toronto-based technology company that provides travel documentation, communication and itinerary management software to the travel industry.
The company says the acquisition will enhance its web and mobile services to deliver upgraded documentation, better templates and seamless, real-time communication between consultants and customers.
Umapped’s products, which are already being used by FLT’s GOGO wholesale business in the U.S., will now be rolled out in other FLT businesses globally and will be a key feature of FCB 2.0, the next generation Flight Centre brand offering in Australia.
“Both the Flight Centre Travel Group and Umapped are pioneers in their respective travel industry fields,” Umapped CEO Lisa Israelovitch said. “Both companies share similar values and a deep commitment to empower travel advisors and suppliers with technology that adds significant value throughout the customer journey. “We are very excited to work alongside the talented FLT team to develop new product offerings with a continued commitment to customer service.”
Umapped’s products include the Trip Publisher itinerary builder and TripLinQ API services, which consolidate bookings, curated content and real-time location data into a single interface. Travellers’ quotes and documents are transformed from static emails and PDFs to a collaborative, living itinerary experience.
The software provides travel consultants access to collaborative features, chat and real-time updates that are delivered to their customers.
“We have been impressed with the platform and believe it can have a positive impact on our consultants’ productivity and on our customers’ travel experiences,” FLT CEO Graham “Skroo” Turner said.
“We continue to invest in systems and teams that can surface our expertise, but also make millions of engagements with our customers easier and more personal. We hope to deploy Umapped software in several countries within a year.”
FLT will take 100% ownership of Umapped and will use general cash to fund the acquisition. The purchase price is immaterial to the company and has not been disclosed.
Umapped was founded in 2012 by Lisa Israelovitch and Thierry Wong, the business’s chief technology officer. The business has a team of 16 people, which includes an 11-person development team. Israelovitch and Wong will continue to run Umapped and will report to FLT’s chief digital officer, Atle Skalleberg.
“Our business transformation program has increased our focus on improving the user experience by removing pain points,” Skalleberg said. “This acquisition will deliver immediate improvements to several of our businesses, including interactive, media-rich enhanced itineraries that feature personalized offers and content, live updates, two-way messaging, real-time chat, and much more.”
Bruce Parkinson Editor-in-Chief
An observer and analyst of the Canadian and international travel industries for over 25 years, Bruce uses the pre-dawn hours to prepare a daily news and information package to keep industry members up to date.