Air France-KLM has partnered with startup Winding Tree to explore how blockchain technology can cut costs for its customers and increase profits for suppliers by cutting out intermediaries.
The airline, the fifth largest in the world, says it believes the partnership will result in “a more advantageous travel offer for customers which is more profitable for suppliers, in particular by reducing the number of intermediaries”.
Sonia Barriere, Executive Vice President of Strategy at Air France-KLM, says: “We are proud to be one of the first airline groups to join Winding Tree to develop blockchain technology. With a long-standing commitment to innovation with startups and partners, Air France-KLM is constantly creating the future of travel and devising solutions to make the travel experience easier and more personalised. With blockchain technology, we aim to revolutionise exchanges within the travel industry for our customers, companies and startups.”
“The Air France-KLM group has built a reputation when it comes to using technology to enhance the customer experience,” adds Pedro Anderson, Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Winding Tree. “We are excited to join them in their goal and commitment towards becoming the leading airline in customer intimacy and we are excited to bring blockchain technology as the tool needed to achieve real innovation and enhanced customer satisfaction.”
Up in the air
Winding Tree has formed blockchain partnerships with other airlines, such as Swiss Air, Air New Zealand, Austrian and Brussels Airlines and Eurowings. The startup also works with Nordic Choice Hotels, one of the largest hotel chains in Scandinavia and the Baltic Region.
In Russia, S7 Airline signed a deal with state-owned Gazprom to utilise blockchain-based smart contracts for fuelling on domestic flights. Singapore Airlines has launched a blockchain-powered loyalty digital wallet.