Each year, PhoCusWright presents The Travel Innovation Summit where travel technology companies showcase their latest applications for an audience of influential travel industry leaders and investors.
Last year, I handicapped the event by polling press, bloggers and the participants themselves to get an insiders perspective on the competition. The voters only identified two of the seven finalists from the 32 entries. Pretty poor guessing by the so-called experts…
This year, tying in with The PhoCusWright Conference’s theme of Travel Unleashed, I am subscribing to the wisdom of crowds and letting everyone participate in the handicapping process.
With thirty-one companies entered and demonstrations running from 9:00am to 6:00pm, the day can be a bit of a marathon. Hopefully this page will serve as a convenient quick reference for the competition (links are provided to all web sites, plus the respective Twitter accounts,) but for the overly ambitious prognosticators, links to the judges LinkedIn profiles and their company websites are also provided.
Sorry, again the temptation to introduce a parimutuel betting application was resisted. Wagering on the results of this competition is probably one of the few activities more risky than investing in the companies themselves… Anyone electing to use results from this survey as the basis for investment decisions may also want to seek professional counseling before signing any checks…
Please make your predictions and share the survey with your friends & colleagues. Let’s see who are the audience favorites and underdogs before they even hit the stage.
If you can not see the survey above, please Click Here to open the survey in a separate browser window.
For those tree-haters who prefer a printed version, here is a link to a PDF Version of the 2011 PhoCusWright Travel Innovation Summit Survey.
Please note: Voting will close at 12:15am Eastern Standard Time, Tuesday, November 15, 2011.
The participants are listed alphabetically by category.
To simplify the voting process, votes will be scored without consideration to the categories of each participant. However, once all the votes are tallied, winners in the various categories will be extrapolated from the general voting results.
A separate blog post will be published early Tuesday with the results and the odds of winning for the leading contenders in each category.
Travel Innovation Summit Votes are cast based on the following criteria:
- Technical Innovation
- Business Model Sustainability
- Marketplace Impact
Then, one winner is selected from each of following three categories – Each will win $15,000:
- Startup: Companies less than 18 months old
- Emerging: Company between 18 months and three years old
- Established: Company is more than three years old
New this year will be three additional awards of $5,000 each for the winners in the following categories:
- Mobile Technology
- Social Media
Finally, also new this year, one demonstrator from the six category winners will receive The DEMO Award for the Most Game-Changing Travel Innovation. This replaces the traditional Best of Show Award.
The present field of 31 (there may be last minute additions and/or scratches) includes 10 Startup, 8 Emerging, 13 Established and 2 Alpha demonstrators. Groupize and Travolver are the two Alpha presenters this year. While not formally competing, the audience will vote their opinion of the product concept.
The Judges & Critics Circle
The judges for this year’s Travel Innovation Summit are:
- Gregg Brockway Co-Founder, Executive Vice President and General Manager, TripIt
- Kerry Cannon Founder and CEO, interactive MOBILE @dvertising LLC
- Hugh Crean Entrepreneur in Residence, General Catalyst Partners
- Jay Habegger Co-Founder and CEO, OwnerIQ
- Kimberley McLoughlin Managing Director, Red Visitor
- Kathy Misunas Founder and Principal, Essential Ideas
- Mark Okerstrom CFO, Expedia
- Debu Purkayastha Principal, Corporate Development, M&A, Google
- Barrie Seidenberg President and CEO, Viator
- Joseph Strodel Director of Communications and Corporate Affairs, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration
- Ned Williams Partner, Brook Venture Fund
Making a return appearance is the Critics Circle, tasked with providing commentary on the presentations, they do not have a vote in the ultimate outcome. This year’s Critics Circle includes:
- Rod Cuthbert Founder and Chairman Emeritus, Viator
- Sophie Forest Managing Partner, Brightspark Ventures
- Jim Hornthal Chairman, Triporati
- Gene Quinn President and CEO, Tnooz
The PhoCusWright Conference
For those who are not familiar with the PhoCusWright Travel Innovation Summit, it is held annually in conjunction with the The PhoCusWright Conference. The 2011 conference will be held in Hollywood, Florida from November 15-17, with the Travel Innovation Summit taking place all day on Tuesday, November 15.
New this year is the FREE Online Ticket that provides streaming video of The Travel Innovation Summit, Center Stage presentations, and even the workshops. As an added bonus, access to the archived video will also be available on-demand through May 31, 2012. Considering tickets for attending the three-day event in person go for $3,700, this represents an amazing opportunity to learn about the latest trends in travel technology, travel marketing and online distribution.
To register for the Free Online Ticket, Click Here.
Good luck to all the competitors – reviewing the field, I am sure all those attending the conference both personally and virtually will be seeing some new and thought provoking applications.