ChangeYourFlight, the Barcelona-based startup offering an online platform for partial refunds for travel cancellations, is expanding its business to other verticals within the airline industry.
As a result of this transformation, the company is changing its name to Caravelo.
Besides ChangeYourFlight’s services, which will still be part of Caravelo’s B2B solution, the startup will offer clients two additional products, ‘Upgrade’ and ‘Extra Seat’. The former allows existing passengers to bid on seats in a higher category while ‘Extra Seat’ enables travellers to place an offer for an additional adjacent seat.
“These are things that most airlines already do, but our platform offers them much more flexibility and the opportunity of controlling everything from a single platform”, explains Caravelo’s co-founder Jose Luis Vilar.
In a conversation with Novobrief, Vilar says that in the industry there are two main types of software solutions. “Some big airlines have decided to take matters into their own hands and develop these kind of solutions in-house”, he notes. The other main provider of these services is Spanish travel giant Amadeus, which has a market cap of $17 billion.
Caravelo wants to position itself in between these two, where they see “a lot of opportunities”.
The startup’s products are available as white-label technology to airlines and travel companies. Caravelo claims to be already working with six “renowned partner airlines”.
“With our products, we cater to the passengers’ demand to enhance their flight experience and travel more comfortably”, says Iñaki Uriz, Caravelo’s CEO. “At the same time, our solutions offer valuable upselling opportunities to airlines that can optimise the sales of distressed inventory and thus generate incremental revenue. It is a win-win situation for all parties involved.”
ChangeYourFlight had raised a small round of funding from FJME (Entrecanales) in 2012 and it’s now announcing more fundraising activity. HR Ventures -the venture capital arm of the Hahn Air group-, FJME and other private investors will back Caravelo with close to €1 million.
Asked about the expansion of Caravelo into other areas, Vilar explains that “ChangeYourFlight was a very niche product and quite unique”. He adds that they quickly realised that the technology they had developed could be used in other areas, and earlier this year they started working on the aforementioned products. “We’re building an umbrella of solutions for airlines and we’ve learned a lot about the industry over the past few years”, he says. “We’re putting that to use”.
Photo | Pexels