IATA Launches Plug and Play Innovation Platform

IATA Launches Plug and Play Innovation Platform

Platform aimed at uniting air sector

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced the creation of Accelerate@IATA, an industry level innovation platform designed to support airlines and their value chain partners by speeding up new technology implementation around IATA standards.

The programme brings together airlines, value chain partners, and startups to pinpoint problems, find solutions and ultimately demonstrate value through pilots and implementations.

IATA also announced it selected Plug and Play to help operate the program and identify and connect with Plug and Play’s network of more than 15,000 startups.

Aleks Popovich, IATA’s Senior Vice President, Financial and Distribution Services, said: “All businesses are racing to introduce new technology that makes them more competitive. But aviation is an industry that combines global interconnected processes, multiple complementary players in the value chain and legacy infrastructure -- and that can make the pace of digital transformation more challenging.

“Accelerate@IATA addresses this innovation issue at the industry level by connecting start-ups with airlines and provides the opportunity to pilot technologies at scale in areas related to IATA standards, initially focused on digital retailing.”

The plan is to accelerate around 20 startups per year in two batches, matching their solutions with industry requirements.

While the first couple of batches will focus on the digital retailing journey, the intent is to expand to other industry issues in the future. The accelerator supports selected startups through education, mentorship, and, potentially, with financing from participating corporate partners.

IATA and program members will set the technology and business focus for each of the acceleration batches.

Each batch will be divided into four phases:

  • Startup sourcing phase, closing with Selection Day
  • Three-month acceleration program
  • Presentation of solutions on Demo Day
  • Pilot phase with airline partners

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