Travelport, which become the sole distributor for Air India and already signed a distribution deal with Jet Airways that is coming into effect from April 1, is quite bullish on India market. “India is larger than many territories and its growing faster than any business in terms of aviation. It is already a key country for Travelport and it needs to grow significantly. We have invested significantly in this territory because we believe in it. We have great relationships with our partners here and we are always looking to build on it. In last 6 months or so, we have started seeing the benefits of those relationships. This territory will help us to grow into the future,” Chris Ramm, Vice President – APAC, Travelport, said on the sidelines of CAPA Aviation Summit recently held in New Delhi.
And, the consistent focus and investment on India is bringing the desired result for Travelport. “India is currently number 2 country for us behind US. The way India is growing it could become the largest country for Travelport. The kind of growth we have seen and future potential of the country, India can be the top country in couple of years,” Ramm added.
Talking about the performance different verticals in India, Sandeep Dwivedi, COO,ITQ, official distributor of Travelport in 6 countries across Asia Pacific region including India, Sri Lanka, said that Travelport is clearly focused on every domain of India growth story. Dwivedi said. Replying to a question over how hotels are coming on Travelport’s platform, Dwivedi opined that the hotel market in India is too fragmented. “The content is not that much available on GDSs platform. It is only like 5 to 4 star properties are available right now on GDS platforms. We have roughly around 650,000 hotels globally and we keep on adding to this numbers. Going forward, hotel is really going to become important for us as new deals are signed; new properties are being produced from hotel perspective. There is a need for the more organized inventory to be available on GDSs platform,” he added.
Elaborating the 2019 roadmap for the New Distribution Capability (NDC) of Travelport, Ramm said that NDC is a big focus for Travelport for many years. “We began conversation with airlines all over the world. We are the first GDS to have Level 3 certification and booking capabilities and production environment. It is only going to grow in 2019,” he added.
Talking about Indian airlines coming on NDC platform, Ramm said that there is limited conversation with carrier in India as their focus is not NDC as of now. “But, I do see airlines over time in India moving towards NDC as it would provide them the ability to earn more revenue. In India, a lot of airlines use API and the NDC is a standard API. India probably have the most impressive country where leading carriers are already using API,” he added.