Archive for December 8th, 2006

Reliance Retail – As if Travel Portals had less worriess..

Economic times had a piece on Reliance Retail getting into travel retailing. Looks like they would like use space available to push whatever retail possible ensuring people dont end up going to regular markets.

The idea behind this is to provide kiosks with access to travel deals/airline reservation/travel insurance ete. This could be a big competition to reliance web world model. But traditionally travel is a grey area as for both the reliance’s as ADAG group has entered it via Venture Capital route hence yatra cant be treated as a group company. Secondly Reliance web world primary business model is dependent¬† on Reliance Communication business. Lets see how Reliance ADAG responds back to it.

Signed up For TiE – Delhi chapter

Finally after months of application form lying around my email. I have finally signed up for TiE today. From the minute i signed up its already started to derive me benefit. As soon as i got into the office digbijoy was kind enough to get me feedback on business plan i had submitted for TiE – Cannan Challenge. Though it didnt make it to final 11 the business model got good feedback and with little tweaking around it should be good to go. The whole idea of joining organization like TiE is to draw valuable feedback from industry leaders and people who have going through the process of sucessful business building.

Though another thing came out of it was VC’s are looking to fund businesses which have potential to became huge elephants, going back to micro-credit….as in india there doesnt exist enviornment for micro credit service to IT enterprises. The VC ecosystem still needs time to become mature enough for people to take right advantage.

TiE is my first step towards restructuring of our organization style to foster the innovation product lab enviornment we wish to achieve.

Online Travel Market Trends and Strategies

This study which just came in talks about various portals and initatives in europe. How are they faring up and where is industry expected to be. Its very important from Travel portal aspects in india. As generally indian industries show similar trend to their european counterpart which is also according to study almost 3 years behind US.

PWC Study on European Online Travel Market

Other than this recent news of Suppliers directly servicing more customers and taking away share from travel portals in US is also a trend to watch out for as more and more new travel 2.0 applications being launched are working away from selling tickets model (farecast,farespy etc). They are going into actual information/research selling commoditizing the information for common budget traveller. Hope they can create a number game model for others to follow.

Travelguru – India’s best travel portal in terms of outbound travel suppliers

Carrying forward my earlier post on finding air tickets for my US Trip . I went forward running searches across all travel portals i could discover courtsey google. Most of them were powered by travel agents who just had submit information form when you click for find fare or comming soon logo. Though one portal i had stayed away from since begining of this blog was Travelguru. I just decided these guys are already getting so much coverage around the world by various publications and bloggers that i should concentrate on other startups in the arena. But again after reading another feed comming in talking about travelguru as leader in online travel space in india. I decided to go visit the portal and try my Delhi-RDU-Delhi return trip search. Waiting to see high cost tickets. I was shocked when they threw up a far less <60,000 as competitive as offline travel agents could offer.

Though the airline being offered was unheard (flying via Kiev,Ukraine) and was dependent on changing flights on multiple carriers. But wooh….finally a travel portal which actually provides you cheap instant online international travel reservation from india. Overall the site is pretty fast and decent but again its a travel 1.0 contender and they are still scaling up in terms of defining their overall customer handling capacity. Which is a good approach as india is game of volume and businesses are changing perspective how they behave in travel space.

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December 2006