Flight Centre Travel Group has acquired travel assistance
chatbot Sam and increased its investment in 30SecondsToFly, which has an
artificial intelligence-powered booking assistant known as Claire.
Flight Centre Travel Group is now the sole owner and licensor of Sam,
which is already used by many of the company’s corporate brands including FCM
Travel Solutions, Corporate Traveler, Campus Travel and Stage and Screen Travel.
“We’re thrilled to bring the Sam team fully into the Flight
Centre family,” says John Morhous, chief experience officer of Flight Centre
Travel Group Corporate Brands.
“We’ve worked closely with the team and product for many
years now and look forward to continuing to drive mobile innovation through the
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Sam, an iOS and Android app, provides itinerary management, push
notifications before and during trips and live chat between consultants and customers.
Flight Centre also has increased its stake in 30SecondsToFly
to about 10%, and it will be the exclusive large global travel management company
to use Claire for two years.
Claire is an air and hotel booking engine driven by AI-powered
chat and trip curation.
The company plans to fully integrate Claire into Sam.
“Having worked with Flight Centre for a few years after
their first investment, we know that they are an excellent investor and we’re
very pleased that they have led our latest financing round,” says Riccardo
Vittoria, CEO of 30SecondsToFly.
“FLT [Flight Centre Travel Group] has given us great help in building technology for TMCs
and they fully support our plan to scale into the TMC market and establish
Claire as the new standard for TMC call center automation. We are looking
forward to implementing our technology for more of their customers.”
Flight Centre Travel Group has more than 30 brands, with
company-owned operations in 23 countries and a corporate travel management network
spanning more than 90 countries.
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