Australia-based Flight Centre Travel Group has
acquired Shep, a U.S-based travel software company that was a PhocusWire
Hot25 Startup of 2019, to strengthen what it offers corporate clients
through its travel management company brand, FCM.
Terms of the acquisition are not being
disclosed. FCM had made a minority
investment in Shep in January 2020, and the two companies had been working
together since then.
FCM works with thousands of companies in more
than 100 countries. The company says Shep’s browser-extension based
communication platform will be integrated with its new FCM Platform, a
proprietary system that provides a comprehensive, artificial intelligence powered
experience designed in an open, flexible platform.
Shep’s technology helps companies manage and
measure employee behavior when using corporate booking systems as well as on
consumer sites such as Expedia and Airbnb.
“At FCM, we strive to offer a best-in-class traveler experience
at every touchpoint of the customer journey,” says Marcus Eklund, FCM global managing director.
“The Shep software has allowed us to extend
that experience on third party websites, further building on the flexibility we
offer customers that we’ve become known for.”
Shep’s browser tool will enable FCM to customize the content
and enhance the user experience on both online booking tools and third-party
websites that its corporate customers use, including integration of content
related to health, safety and sustainability policies.
“FCM shares our passion for intelligent and ground-breaking
technology that addresses pain points and vastly improves the user experience.
We are thrilled and excited to play our part in supporting their vision for the
new FCM Platform,” says Daniel Senyard, co-founder and CEO of Shep.
In August 2020 Flight Centre acquired
WhereTo, a U.S.-based provider of corporate travel technology. Earlier that
year it made an equity investment in air
content aggregator TPConnects and one year prior it acquired mobile
chatbot platform Sam.
“Our continued focus in game-changing technology provides our
corporate clients with superior tools and services to help them stay ahead of
the rapidly evolving corporate travel landscape. This will allow us to emerge
from the pandemic in an incredibly powerful way,” Eklund says.