We are going to celebrate entering our sixth month at PhocusWire with the launch of Startup Stage.
Like our sister brand Phocuswright, which has championed startups at its events by throwing them into the limelight and be scrutinised by their industry peers, we think new businesses have various roles in this exciting and challenging sector of travel, tourism and hospitality.
Travel startups can defy conventional thinking as to how the industry should operate. They can also challenge the status quo with fresh ideas, motives and processes.
Some new businesses can sometimes open up an completely new sector within the market. They can introduce technology or a user experience that makes the industry wonder why it still thinks it does things the way it has done for years.
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The flip side of many travel startups often being mocked or sneered at by established players for not seeing the bigger picture, or solving a problem that doesn't really exist, is that they should still be celebrated and analysed for having a go.
But most importantly, we want them to succeed in their own right, or get to a level where their people and technology are accepted as equals (or more) by their counterparts in the industry.
Beginning in April 2018, PhocusWire will feature new businesses via a dedicated Startup Stage online feature.
Companies under two years from their founding date will be eligible. Those selected just need to answer a series of detailed questions about their business, technology, team, motivation, aspirations, and how they plan to succeed.
Coverage isn't guaranteed, nor a favourable response from those that read about a new business. We will actively encourage the audience to pose more questions to those featured, plus we will ensure that a new business is summoned back to the stage to share how things are working out.
* Phocuswright's existing Summit program for travel startups will feed into Startup Stage when appropriate. For more information about its Launch and Battleground competitions, click here.