Amadeus sets up innovation centre with Accenture

Amadeus says it’s using “sprint” development techniques to help airlines move forward on projects.

The distribution giant has created an Innovation Centre in Dublin as part of the alliance formed with Accenture just under two years ago when the Navitaire acquisition was announced.

The Innovation Centre, part of Accenture offices already located in the city, aims to inspire airline execs to move forward with ideas and find use cases.

The plan is to spend time identifying a problem with an airline’s management team.

The issue or concept then needs to get to a level where it can go through a five-day design sprint involving outside expertise and resulting in a prototype being built.

According to Carsten Weisse, who heads up the travel element of Accenture, airlines don’t have the internal expertise to experiment with a lot of things.

The innovation centre hopes to host two airline customers a month and may also look to bring in hotels in the future.

The outcome may end up being for common use or specific to the airline if developed as a point of differentiation.

Amadeus declined to say how much is being invested in the innovation centre but says it will have a dedicated team of eight, four from each company.

Andrea Marazzi, head of the alliance for Amadeus, says:

“It’s part of our goal to partner with airlines. For innovation, you need to have fresh ideas, so they come here and then go back to the organisation with something.”

The alliance continues to look at a number of areas where Amadeus technology can be enhanced with services from Accenture such as a data layer for its merchandising products.

With the Innovation Centre, the companies also want to expand into areas such as robotics and artificial intelligence.

A Pepper robot to help passengers around the airport was showcased at the recent Airline Executive Summit as well as an ID verification system using facial recognition.

NB: Writer’s travel to the Airline Executive Summit was supported by Amadeus.

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