Technology

AirAsia strikes Google deal in bid to transform in to tech company

Posted by Lee Hayhurst on
AirAsia strikes Google deal in bid to transform in to tech company

South East Asia airline AirAsia has struck an agreement with Google Cloud to help it transform into a technology company.

The deal will see the search giant’s machine learning and artificial intelligence expertise integrated into the carrier’s business.

The airline said this will impact every aspect of its business and culture as part of its transformation into a travel technology company.

AirAsia will work with Google Cloud to solve “high-impact business challenges”, including:

• Drive better demand forecasting and more targeted marketing;
• Improve customer experience and loyalty by providing a more personalised experience for its customers;
• Maximise operational efficiency and reduce risk through predictive maintenance, real-time weather forecasting and crew optimisation.

AirAsia said its technical team will work with Google Cloud engineers allowing the airline’s technical teams to address specific business scenarios while gaining a foundation in AI with Google Cloud’s TensorFlow and Cloud Machine Learning Engine.

AirAsia will be able to enroll its technical teams in the same programme Google Cloud uses to train its engineers, allowing the airline to build on its own internal machine learning expertise.

AirAsia will also work with Google Cloud to transform its work culture by deploying G Suite and Chrome Enterprise to create an agile digital experience that will provide access to data and analysis when and where they are needed to speed up decision-making.

AirAsia Group chief executive, Tony Fernandes, said: “AirAsia has been at the forefront of adopting new digital technologies since our inception in 2001.

“We are now in our next phase of development where we are expanding beyond air transport and digitalising our operations and processes to become more efficient.

“Google Cloud enables us to make full use of the data we own, opening up new opportunities and enabling us to build new businesses.

AirAsia is building two new platforms. The first is airasia.com, a one-stop digital travel platform where customers can book their travel needs from flights, accommodation, tours, ground transport to entertainments.

The second is BigLife, a lifestyle site which will it says will be like Kayak, Tripadvisor, Groupon and eBay rolled into one.

BigLife will incorporate all the digital investments under AirAsia’s digital arm RedBeat Ventures, such as money app BigPay, inflight connectivity platform ROKKI, online marketplace Ourshop and logistics services RedBox and RedCargo.

Both platforms will help drive more business into AirAsia with the help of data, the airline said.

Diane Greene, chief executive of Google Cloud, said: “AirAsia started with G Suite to transform the way its organization works.

“Now, with our advanced analytics platform and machine learning services, AirAsia will be able to digitize every aspect of its business to better serve their customers.”

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