Digital Travel Connect 2018

16 - 17 October, 2018

Le Meridien Ra Beach Hotel

+44 (0)207 368 9516


2018 Speakers

Alan Coates
Head of Planning and Delivery

Alan leads the team responsible for planning and executing Ryanair’s highly successful digital strategy – with a focus on rapid delivery of complex technical projects.  With over 20 years’ experience transforming delivery in the Airline, Automotive, Financial and Online Education industries Alan will share his ideas and experience on how to implement a cutting-edge digital strategy to transform business models.

Julien Lechat
eAcquisition Director, Digital Marketing
Air France

Julien has over 18 years  experience in Airline Business Digital Marketing, Commercial Director, Revenue Management Pricing and Network Planning 7 Management positions Work experience in France, Italy, Caribbean and UK. At Air France/KLM, Julien works within the Digital Marketing Department, managing e-Acquisitions Strategy and team, a centralized team of 24 staff, managing all 80 markets worldwide. His team is specifically responsible for:
- Display (including internal trading desk for RTB)
- Search
- Emailing
- Metasearch
- Affiliates

Akira Mitsumasu
VP, Products & Services Planning
Japan Airlines

Akira Mitsumasu joined Japan Airlines in 1989, and has previously been responsible in the company for passenger services, network planning, international affairs, business development in China, internal auditing, IPO, marketing & strategy in Asia and Oceania region before taking on the role from November 2017 as VP for Products and Services Planning.  Akira holds a DBA from Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo, where his research was on parent and subsidiary relationship of Japanese corporate groups.

Akira has been awarded the Greatest Marketing Influencers 2016 by BBC Knowledge, Asia’s Best Marketer 2016 by CMO Asia, Most Influential Global Marketing Leaders 2016 by World Marketing Congress, Best Leader in Marketing Strategy 2016 by Global Brands Magazine Award, Business Leader of the Year – ICO (Branding & Marketing) by World Federation of Marketing.

Dr. Zhihang Chi
Vice President & General Manager, North America
Air China

As Vice President and General Manager for North America, Dr. Zhihang Chi currently manages all aspects of Air China’s business in the region from the company’s headquarters in Los Angeles, California. He is responsible for more than 175 U.S.-based Air China employees and oversees marketing and operations for all passenger flights between North America and China. Dr. Chi joined Air China in 2004 and has since led North America’s growth initiatives, investments and various contributions across the local economies the company services. Prior to his promotion to Vice President in April 2008, Dr. Chi was General Manager for the Western U.S. region for two years until November 2006. Before that, he was responsible for Air China’s Los Angeles operations.

Julio Alejandro Gamero
Chief Commercial Officer

Julio Gamero joined Interjet in 2017 as Chief Commercial Officer. He has 14 years of airline management experience, overseeing all commercial, operational and P&Lfinancial aspects of multiple airline companies in 5 different countries in LATAM. He has extensive Revenue Management and Commercial experience. He also served serving also as Head of Itineraries, Market Development and Distribution departments in TACA Airlines. In AVIANCA, he was appointed as Vice-President of Regional Airlines and most recently as Vice-President of Business Units in Ecuador and Executive President of Airlines Galapagos (AeroGal). His experience includes specialized proficiency in business turnarounds, processes optimization and strategic planning.

Olivier Plaitin
Head of Digital Delivery
Brussels Airlines

With 20 years of airline technology experience, Oliver currently serves as Head of Solution Delivery at Brussels Airlines. Having lead key areas of IT delivery, from solutions architecture, development and to infrastructure and operations. Well acquainted with the struggles that both IT and the business face. Believer that to deliver fast and in quality, close collaboration between development and operations is a must. With a formidable passion for innovation, combined with his vision, strategic thinking and charisma, bringing inspiration and motivation to the teams.

Iris Taguet Zintl
Blockchain Program Lead
Air France-KLM

Iris Taguet is the Head of the Blockchain Program at Air France – KLM. She is responsible for building the global Blockchain strategy for the Air France – KLM group, from awareness, to business uses cases; from definining the technical architecture to setting up the governance model; and finally building up a team of Blockchain ambassadors within the group. Previous to that, she managed several projects for IT Innovation at Air France - KLM. With almost 15 years of experience, Iris has a very strong knowledge of the airline industry. Creativity, drive and leadership are Iris’ greatest strengths. Her most recent success involved is breaking into Blockchain as the new technology spectrum, and Iris targets are to study Blockchain, to understand the benefits this technology can bring to Air France / KLM, explain the key principles to working level as well as management to enable clear decisions and to liaise with partners inside and outside. the industry. This resulted in the launch of the program she is now leading. Iris holds a double Master degree in Business Management and Information System Project Management from the IAE de Paris (Sorbonne Business School).

David Griffin
Head of Digital Channel Management B2C Sales and Marketing

David Griffin is a resilient serial entrepreneur specialised in Customer Success & Development, Community, B2B, B2C, SaaS, marketplaces, Operations & Logistics. David has helped launch 3 start-ups as co-founder / 1st employee, all of which gained seed funding. David is highly experienced in multi-lingual sales & a marketing expert. David is passionate about customer happiness, consistently going above & beyond to delight customers & instil a strong customer centric ethos in the team.

Spencer Lee
Commercial Director

Spencer oversees the entire Commercial function of AirAsia's Malaysia operations covering 11 departments including marketing and advertising, sales and distribution, digital, financial partners, mobile and loyalty. He joined AirAsia in 2006 as Marketing Manager before becoming Head of Marketing in 2013 and then Head of Commercial a year later. He is also a member of the Malaysian Advertisers Association, a board member of the Audit Bureau of Circulation (Malaysia) and member of the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA).

Rob Muir
Chief Digital Officer
National Express
Rob is Chief Digital Officer at National Express Group, a leading transport provider operating bus, coach and rail services across the UK, Continental Europe, North Africa, North America and the Middle East; over 921 million journeys are made on our services each year. He is responsible for the development and implementation of digital and data strategies across the Group, driving both customer focus and operational excellence. Rob is an experienced customer centric marketer, covering local and international aspects of business strategy and integrated digital marketing strategy, working extensively across digital marketing, technology and business transformation.
Santiago Garcia Solimei
Global Director of Social Media
Meliá Hotels International

Santiago has over 10 years marketing and communications experience in the travel & hospitality and software industries for multi-national organisations. He is a digital marketer with expertise in ATL and BTL marketing campaigns, brand management, Social Media & PR.

Before his current role, he was the Head of Marketing for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Meliá Hotels International  and was responsible for a portfolio of 79 hotels across 6 Brands in the Luxury, High End and mid Market segments.

Frippe Stenberg
VP Brands, Customer Journey, Digital Development and Innovation
Scandic Hotels

Frippe is VP Brands, Customer journey, Digital development and Innovation at Scandic Hotels. Scandic is the definite market leader in Nordic hospitality with an unbeatable network of almost 230 hotels run by 14,000 committed team members. We are the ‘best hotel brand’ in the Nordics (BDRC) and enjoy a following of 1.6 million Scandic Friends members.

Riko van Santen
VP Digital Strategy & Distribution
Kempinski Hotels

Riko oversees distribution, e-Commerce, revenue management, and loyalty at Kempinski's headquarters, and is directly responsible for the strategic direction of digital marketing, pricing and guest engagement initiatives.  Riko’s main goal through his role is to constantly embrace the rise of technology deployment in the hospitality industry –successfully translating technical advances into market growth.

Andrea Prati
Worldwide Channels Strategy & Customer Operations Director
Costa Crociere

Andrea has over 20+ years’ experience in Management Consulting (FMCG, Fashion and Retail) and Tourism. His main experience lies  in Strategy, Sales & Marketing, Analytics & Big Data, Customer Experience and Operations. He has a proven track record in leading multi-national environment, inter-departmental teams and large operations. Andrea’s international working experience is based on long stays in foreign countries (Spain, France, USA, UK) and direct responsibility on offices and operations around the world. In his current role, he heads up the Worldwide Channels Strategy & Commercial Operations with specific focus on Trade Development, New Channels discovery and Commercial Operations for all countries where Costa operates.

Pelayo Pando
Director of e-Commerce Business Development & Market Strategy
NH Hotel Group

Pelayo started his career within the Telco sector, first as a business consultant and later as a product manager focused on growth strategies, go-to-market and strategic projects management. 3 years ago he decided to accept the challenge of being part of the digital transformation NH Hotel Group leading the e-Commerce Business Development area. Founded in 1978, NH Hotel Group is today one of the top 25 hotel chains in the world and one of the main ones in Europe, currently operating close to 400 hotels with almost 60,000 rooms in 28 countries in Europe, America and Africa.

Marc Graser
Senior Director, Marriott Creative + Content Marketing
Marriott International

Marc Graser is Senior Director, Creative + Content Marketing at Marriott International and oversees how the world's largest hotel company tells stories across its online channels – from websites to mobile app. He is a proven leader in creating raving brand fans and converting audiences of content into consumers, while lifting and shifting the perception of Marriott's 30 hotel brands and loyalty program, and inspiring Next-Gen Travelers to explore the world's greatest destinations. Before joining Marriott International, Graser worked as a professional journalist, serving as a senior writer and senior editor for Variety  and Advertising Age.

Annalisa Salvadori
Director of World Wide New Channels
Costa Crociere
Anders Hellberg
Head of Customer Acquisition & Conversion
Christoph Von Bülow
HolidayPirates Group

Christoph joined HolidayPirates Group at the start of 2016 and became COO in January 2018. Prior to HolidayPirates, Christoph held various international management positions within the tourism and media industry such as Travelzoo, and Hubert Burda Media. Today, he leads Operations for HolidayPirates and develops further international partnerships for the group.

Claire Evans
Head of Retail Strategy