March 10, 2021

The future of Asian travel distribution

The future of Asian travel distribution



Exclusive interview: Deep Kalra, CEO – MakeMytrip

In an today’s ITB Berlin NOW CEO Interview, Deep Kalra, CEO of MakeMytrip will be talking about “The Future of Asian Travel Distribution”. As a foretaste of presentation, we asked him how his organisation has been faring in these times, and how it has been adapting.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been a black swan event for the global travel & tourism industry and has had a far-reaching impact, which we will perhaps continue to see for years to come. It’s also in times of adversity that the endurance and resilience of the industry, ecosystem and businesses gets truly known. From rewiring our strategy to focus on survival during the zero-travel phase, to readapting our offerings and innovating to offer safe, seamless and contactless travelling experience – we continued to reinvent ourselves for recovery and growth. All along we worked even more closely with the ecosystem to help bring back the industry on its feet faster. As the pandemic appears to be on the wane in India, we have successfully moved the needle to springing back a 169% quarter-on-quarter growth, during the third quarter FY’21.

What are some of the new strategic directions being taken?
In the near-term, our primary focus remains on propelling the domestic travel demand. This is the segment that will continue to spearhead recovery and we are going after the opportunity through our new localised travel offerings and initiatives that have been designed with an aim to encourage Indians to explore more locally. We are also bullish on solving the need-gap for private or alternative accommodations – a trend that has emerged strong following the pandemic with travellers now actively considering both, hotels and non-hotels. Another trend that has found new force is the acceleration of online adoption across sectors including travel and we believe that it is only a matter of time before we start to accrue the benefits from the offline to online shift in travel booking behaviour.

What advice can you give in terms of “next steps”? No doubt you will be expanding on these in your talk.
In future, as cross-border leisure and business travel resumes, a smooth international travel market recovery will demand deeper and wider collaboration between countries and the larger travel ecosystem to introduce initiatives that promise greater safety and hygiene assurance to travellers. Ubiquitous safety protocols such as immunity certifications and vaccination passports will certainly hold key to boosting confidence amongst travellers and this to me will become the new travel norm.

Photo: Deep KALRA, CEO, MakeMytrip

Makemytrip: It’s all about travel

Nurtured from the seed of a single great idea – to empower the traveller – MakeMyTrip is a pioneer in India’s online travel industry. Founded in the year 2000 by Deep Kalra, MakeMyTrip came to life to empower the Indian traveller with instant bookings and comprehensive choices. MakeMyTrip has stayed ahead of the curve by continually evolving its technology to meet the ever-changing demands of the rapidly developing global travel market, steadily establishing itself as India’s leading online travel company.

ITB CEO Interview:
The Future of Asian Travel Distribution
Wednesday, 10 March 2021
16:40 – 16:55
ITB Berlin NOW Convention Stage 1