Lufthansa Group has made a "multimillion-dollar" investment with app-only price prediction and booking platform Hopper.
The investment is being touted as a two-part strategy: creating a research alliance between the pair to develop predictive analytics and flight-demand forecasting, and giving Hopper a foothold in Europe as the Canada-based company looks to expand on a global basis.
For the Lufthansa Group, partnering with Hopper will give it the ability to utilize artificial intelligence to learn more about traveler preferences as part of a program to develop personalized recommendations about its services and ancillary products such as upgrades.
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The partnership was formed in and will be run out of the Lufthansa Innovation Hub, the group's so-called innovation and digitization unit that has already invested in a fleet logistics and Cargo.One platform over the course of the past 12 months.
Gleb Tritus, managing director of the Lufthansa Innovation Hub, says: “In the coming months, we will support the collaboration with the Lufthansa Group’s revenue management and distribution experts.
"We are also confident that our Berlin team will be able to make a vital contribution to Hopper's European expansion.”
Hopper is embarking on a major growth strategy, fueled by a $100 million Series D financing round announced in October 2018.
The funding was led by OMERS Ventures, with participation from existing investors Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, Accomplice, Brightspark Ventures, Investissement Québec, BDC Capital IT Venture Fund and new investor Citi Ventures. It brought the company’s total funding to date to $184 million.
The mobile app combines data and artificial intelligence to predict future prices for flights and accommodations, which can all be booked in the app. The app claimed to have sold nearly $1 billion in bookings by the time of the funding round since it launched in 2015.
Frederic Lalonde, co-founder and CEO at Hopper, says: “The combination of local market knowledge and dedication to exploring the upper bounds of AI makes this an ideal partnership for Hopper as we double down on our efforts to bring the best in travel booking to a global audience.”
* Check out our interview with Lalonde during The Phocuswright Conference 2018 in Los Angeles.
PhocusWire @ Phocuswright 2018 - Hopper on growth plans and the impact of NDC