Under the overarching conference theme of “The Future of Travel”, the organizers of ITB Asia, Messe Berlin (Singapore), have announced that this year’s keynote speeches will be delivered by industry leaders from IBM and Google, who will speak on the very latest trends in Artificial Intelligence (AI) including the impact, use and benefits of AI in the travel industry.
Starting from 9am on 25 October, the keynote addresses will be delivered by Tony Menezes, Vice President of Industrial and Distribution Sector at IBM Asia Pacific and Rob Torres, Managing Director of Advertising and Marketing at Google. Sharanjit Leyl, Presenter and Producer at BBC News will moderate the keynote session.
Tony Menezes will speak about the opportunities to fundamentally transform the travel industry with cognitive technology, and how IBM Watson is making travel experiences more personal, relevant and convenient. As Vice President, Industrial and Distribution Sector at IBM Asia Pacific, Tony Menezes is responsible for building and growing relationships across IBM’s portfolio of industry solutions, software, services and platforms. Prior to this, Tony was responsible for business development and sales of Cognitive Industry solutions, based on IBM Watson, the AI platform for business.
Rob Torres, Industry Director, Travel at Google will be speaking about how consumer expectations for seamless, assistive experiences in travel are higher than ever before. He will share how the Google Travel team is leveraging new digital trends and machine learning to build more immersive experiences for users across the travel journey. Google’s suite of travel products includes Google Flights, Google Hotel Ads, Destinations on Google, and Google Trips.
“Artificial intelligence is making real waves in the travel industry and changing the way business is done. We’re seeing an increasing number of travel and hospitality brands integrating AI into their online strategies in efforts to improve customer service and engagement and it is clearly a major trend that is here to stay. This year, we felt it was timely to have two influential experts in AI share their knowledge and insights at ITB Asia 2017, and we are delighted to welcome Tony Menezes from IBM Asia Pacific and Rob Torres from Google as keynote speakers for what will no doubt be a truly exciting start to this year’s show”, said Katrina Leung, Executive Director of Messe Berlin (Singapore) and ITB Asia.
ITB Asia 2017 is expected to top the success of ITB Asia in 2016, where almost 900 buyers attended the show, leading to a 1:1 ratio between exhibitors and buyers whilst over 50% of buyers signed deals with exhibitors after the event. 43% of attending buyers had purchasing power of USD 500,000 to USD one million and 85.7% of attending buyers were direct decision makers.