During the #IBMThink event in SanFrancisco, UNLOCK met with Mr. Gregory Land, Global Industry Leader and Executive Director for travel and Transport. As Land explained, “Today there are a lot of Blockchain projects within the travel and transportation industry. Most of them are centered on billing and settlement as well as asset utilization across the travel and transportation supply industry.”
Land mentioned two projects that IBM is currently working on. One of the projects is in Europe with one of the biggest transportation companies Deutsche Bahn. DB Systel, IT service Provider of DB and IBM focused on driving innovation and creating a first-mover advantage in public mobility by enabling transparent business networks between service providers using blockchain technology. As Land explains, “The platform will work to offer a full service experience to customers from booking airlines tickets, to rail or taxi in one go. This will also make it easier to settle payments between providers in less time, more accurately and transparently. Today it takes 45 working days to settle payments given the complexity involved and commission schemes between players. In the future it will take 45 minutes.”
In the MENA region, specifically in Turkey, IBM partner SevenGates is working with Further Network a blockchain startup in Turkey to build a blockchain based payment and settlement platform for one of the biggest travel agencies in Turkey Vista which is focused on corporate sales, and the representative of Carlson Wagonlit Travel
According to Kadir Özgür Oğuz- Co-Founder & CEO of Further Network in a previous statement, “With our P2P collaboration technology, it is possible for the travel agencies to reclaim the control of their cash. The issues caused by the current trust-management process between airlines and travel agencies are being solved by our Smart Contract, which allows real-time transactions that also keeps disputes down.” He adds, “ We aim to provide a solution to Airlines, Agencies, Hotels and travel service providers to solve their Billing, Settlement, and Payment (BSP) issues while removing the 3rd parties and completing BSP in real-time through our Autonomous Smart Travel Ecosystem.”
Future Network’s Decentralised Process: real-time (BSP) process; will reduce the waiting time and the security deposits that agencies are facing in the current system. From the travelers’ side, by tokenizing the tickets through Smart Travel Record (STR); this technology will also allow customers to customize their flight tickets or even change and sell them.
There are a lot of cost savings expected as the settlements and transactions are done autonomously by eliminating the 3rd parties. As mentioned by Future Network this means a minimum of a 40% increase in profits of the airlines.
Future Network will be launching their passenger wallet with Biometric ID in Q1 of 2019, and in Q2 will be launching their Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Travel Product Distribution.