It was only last month that US airline JetBlue became the rare airline to set up a venture capital firm in Silicon Valley, named JetBlue Technology Ventures. Today it disclosed its first investment, which is in Flyr, which predicts price changes and seat availability for tickets on specific flights.
The funding amount of the seed extension was not disclosed. The startup has previously said it has raised $6.84 million in investment from other sources, such as Streamlined Ventures and Montage Ventures. Its European arm has received funding from AXA, the insurance giant.
Bonny Simi, president of JetBlue Technology Ventures, said in a statement:
“We choose FLYR as our first investment because they share our belief that predictive analytics can provide value to travelers and will change the travel experience in ways we have yet to imagine.”
In a surprise, Flyr also hinted that it may soon add hotel-related products.
As of today, the startup said it provides airfare predictions for all North-American and most European flight routes, based on machine learning and predictive analytics.
It offers a consumer version of a price-protection product for US domestic flights on major airlines, but its primary business is on the B2B side, aiming to provide products on behalf of airlines and other travel suppliers, either white-labled or co-branded. As of its latest release last month, it has been making available its Fare Protection SDK for the American, British, Canadian, German, and French markets priced in USD, CAD, EUR, and GBP.
For example, insurers can use Flyr’s API to create their own airfare farelocks, either white-labeled or co-branded.
The fee for fare insurance varies.
JetBlue's VC fund has previously said that it wants to focus on travel and hospitality startups.
Flyr has come along way since its launch, when Tnooz did a profile of it.