Travel management platform sees imminent ‘tipping point’ for return of business travel
by: Harvey Chipkin
TripActions, the corporate travel management platform, announced three new major UK-based enterprise clients: Primark, Springer Nature and Advance, adding to a roster of more than 700 new customers since March 2020. The company has made substantial investment in its product offering, including the expansion of its European Union rail, air, hotel and car inventory; language localization; sustainability controls; and carbon impact reporting.
Danny Finkel, chief travel officer, told BTE that the activity means “we are getting excitingly close to a tipping point in the return of business travel.” He said TripActions is hearing that sentiment from its customers and is seeing it in its networks. He added, “We are ramping up for our own company’s return to travel.” Because of inconsistent global vaccine rollouts and restrictions, said Finkel, international business travel will likely lag, but he expects domestic business travel to increase rapidly in the months to come. He said trends show that the company’s travel bookings have increased 47% since the first week of February. In addition, he said, conferences are starting to prepare for in-person events at scale.
Finkel told BTE that the uptick in European activity improves the experience for global travel managers and employees, including in North America. Some of the biggest new customers in Europe, said Finkel, are multinational corporations “looking for travel and expense solutions that serve the needs of their employees — regardless of that employee’s location.”
The number one concern the company is hearing from clients, said Finkel, is how they will prepare for a “tidal wave of travel requests” — and how to best ramp up their travel programs and get back into gear.
TripActions raised $155 million in Series E growth funding in January, for a valuation of $5 billion. With an increasing customer base in the Europe/Middle East/Africa (EMEA) region, the company plans to use the recent funding to increase UK employee numbers by 50%. It is also adding staff in North America. This builds on the naming of Christopher Vik as senior vice president of sales, EMEA; and Simone Buckley (previously CEO of Fello Travel) as vice president of EMEA marketing.