Croydon-based travel software developer Intuitive has brought in a software development director from outside the industry to speed up development of its system.
Mike Palmer has experience of the publishing industry having worked for the likes of Bauer Media and HarperCollins.
Jackie Groves, sales and marketing director, said Intuitive was aiming to boost performance by getting quality new software releases to customers both more quickly and frequently.
“This allows us to take a further step forward in terms of performance by bringing in someone with a world class software background from other industries to move our platform forward faster. We will have higher quality, fast turnaround.”
Intuitive managing director Paul Nixon said the new hire brings top industry standards into the firm, enabling it to offer clients a fully agile development cycle and improved testing.
He said his time has increasingly been spent with the private equity investors NVM who backed Intuitive’s management buyout in 2012 and away from the core technology.
“We wanted to take the very young team we have recruited and augment that with some industry standards to bring some better practices into the business. We have more and more customers and they have more requirements and demands but still want to move very fast and we have to have processes that are very slick and more tools to help manage that.
“As our customers grow their demands change, and as they get bigger they worry about down time so they want releases at night when business is quiet and for bigger customers performance on the platform is absolutely key.”
Intuitive brought in former Thomas Cook boss Iain Ailles 12 months ago as chairman, to fulfil a broad role and bring his knowledge and industry contacts into the business and to organise the management team and structures.
Groves said Intuitive aims to grow by 10 to 15 customers a year taking on mainly medium sized tour operators looking to take advantage of Intuitive’s pre-packaging capabilities for complex itineraries.
“In the UK more traditional operators are growing and are finding they need to move onto a better platform, or there are parts of larger companies who want to take their stock forward,” said Groves.
Intuitive is looking for overseas growth in Europe and Australia, where it has Webjet as a customer, the firm continues to develop all if its software in Croydon although it has started to consider outsourcing to give it additional scalability and is talking to Data Art.
Nixon said Intuitive has refactored its caching and search technology which it expects to see result in a 50% improvement in performance. This helps to reduce the server requirements of their customers and reduces their costs, he said.
Amadeus has now been integrated into Intuitive’s iVector system alongside Travelport and Multicom for flights.The firm has also added 12 third party bed bank and other product feeds in the last 12 months.
Groves said revenues were up 20% this year, but there was now a drive to increase profitability.
“Last year we spent a lot of time investing in the business. This year it will be about driving the efficiencies and profitability that those investments bring us.”