Opodo marked its 15th birthday with an event in London last night celebrating the landmark with many of its airline partners.
The OTA, which was originally founded by nine European airlines and powered by Amadeus technology, is now owned by eDreams ODIGEO, the Barcelona-based online giant.
Today Opodo operates websites across 16 countries, including an international website serving worldwide markets.
Chief executive Dana Dunne (pictured) said 15 years may not seem like a long time in aviation, but in terms of the internet it was an age.
“In the online world years are measured like dogs, so one equals seven. Back in 2001 Opodo was founded by a number of airlines. We really would not be here without that partnership.
“When you think back to 2001 the world has changed in a number of ways. In order for Opodo to sell back in 2001 you had to have a physical plate [from the airline]. We had 90 of them.
“It’s amazing to think how the world has changed from being very physical to being very digital. Back in 2001 hardly any one of us made purchases online. You may have searched online.
“When you think about mobile no one had smartphones, they were all dumb. Today for Opodo one in four purchases are actually via mobile, in the UK that’s one in three. That’s remarkable.
“It just shows how much the world has changed.”
Dunne said he was very positive about the future despite the impression many of the recent headlines in the media give related to politics.
“Fundamentally at the end of the day the human spirit is about making new acquaintances, breaking down barriers, breaking down frontiers, and travel is at the heart of that.
“An increasingly greater proportion of consumers’ disposable income goes on travel. That trend is not slowing down, it’s actually accelerating.”
Opodo at 15 – a timeline
2001 Opodo founded by nine European airlines and travel technology provider Amadeus. First offices opened in London and Hamburg, and German website launched in November
2002 Opodo website launched in UK (January) and France (April)
2006 Opodo turns five, and launched “one-way combinable” fares to provide consumers with more value and booking choice. Italian website launches.
2011 Opodo turns 10 and launches its first fully mobile website to offer a state of the art customer experience. Opodo acquired to become part of the eDreams ODIGEO group.
2012 Opodo launches its first 4in1 travel app providing flights, hotels, last minute and holiday packages in one application
2014 Opodo’s parent company, eDreams ODIGEO, completes an IPO in April. The first Australian website launched, Opodo.com.au
2015 In June, Opodo releases new Apple Watch app. In October Opodo launched new technology, OneFront Platform, to be more responsive to customers’ needs.