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CORDIS - EU research results



Reporting period: 2016-08-01 to 2016-10-31

Airports are increasingly handling more passengers every year. Leisure and business travel has increased the load on Airport infrastructure and hence airports must invest to serve the needs of the passengers, providing them a good service in their journey from Check-in to departure and vice-versa for arriving passengers. BizTweet’s overall objective is to provide Airports with a tool to communicate directly with the passenger adding a personal touch throughout the journey. Our aim is to leverage the power of social media in delivering flight information, airport announcements, promotional materials and many other messages directly to the relevant passengers, in a personalized manner, on-time and in their own language. We aim to reduce the information overload of the passengers whilst delivering the essential information to the passenger.
This feasibility study explores the potential of commercialising BizTweet. BizTweet has been developed by our team with the intention of the commercialising it to the airport sector, and potentially role out to other sectors. The objectives of the feasibility study were achieved through designated tasks as per the work description. The analysis used available information on legal frameworks, current and forecasted data on market and financial environments, technical and commercial specification of existing and pipeline products and data collected through potential customers’ and stakeholders’ feedback. The market assessment was aimed at studying the different segments of airports we had and eventually ruling out the most attractive sectors for BizTweet. Finally the commercial assessment looked at various scenarios considering the best and worst case scenarios and estimating the outcome in each case.
The work on the project started with legal framework. The focus was on two aspects within the project; Freedom to operate and safe operating within regional and international privacy laws and policies. In the first part of the work we made an extensive research for patents and patent applications that could be similar to BizTweet. We came up with a list and then we analysed each patent/application to see its similarity. In the end we arrived to the conclusion that BizTweet is not infringing on any patent and none of the patents was even close to our system. The final part of the legal framework study was aimed at assuring that our processes are within regional and international law on data privacy. Both EU and USA data privacy laws and policies where analysed. The study gave us assurance that we were able to operate our process.
The second part of the project focused on the Market Assessment. The aim of this assessment was to conclude which are the market segments where BizTweet should be focused and secondly which are the segments that the business model would be focused on and how large are these segments. Using a number of passenger reviews, reports and our own databases on airports and their use of social media we compiled a data set with 5 important factors. 1) Geographic location, 2)Passenger traffic (size), 3)Development rating and 4) Social Media rating. Each factor was used to come up with different segments that where particularly of interest to us. The second part focused solely on the Passenger Traffic factor within those segments that were attractive to BizTweet. This was used in the business model further on as the pricing model is based on the size of the airport.
The final part of the project focused on developing a business model. The business model was based on the market data extrapolated in the previous section. For our estimates we took 3 scenarios reflecting different possibilities that could occur in our commercialization. We took a best-case scenario having most of the sales anticipated, a worst-case scenario with less market penetration and with less services sold to the airports and finally we also took a conservative approach having a smaller market penetration but increasing the tangible accessible market due to the expected higher social media penetration use within airports. We also came up with a pricing model catering for the different needs of airports and according to their size. Moreover we also made a study to come up with a cost per unit sold to better estimate our costs. We summed all the data into 3 tables outlining a 5 year plan and estimate of revenue and growth in the 5 years past 2018.
In conclusion the feasibility study provided us with a report clearly outlining what lies ahead and what needs to be done for the successful commercialization of the BizTweet project.
The BizTweet project aims to improve information delivery in Airports and in the future also in other vertical markets such as cruise liners, train stations, etc. We are taking the traditional market where information is provided on large screens in the terminal area and upgrading it to a personalized delivery right on the mobile. We are progressing the state-of-the-art by providing, personalized messaging content reducing information overload for the passenger. We are also reducing congestion in the Airports which is considered a security risk in Airports today by reducing the amount of people that are visiting or waiting for flight updates at the information terminals.
We are also progressing the state of the art in the field of social media data analytics. We are developing algorithms that, without infringing on any data privacy issues, provide airports with the possibility of delivering personalized promotional material to passengers. Thereby we are giving Airports the possibility of monetizing their efforts in delivering free wi-fi to the passengers.
The project also has an impact on societal challenges. The project is another step closer to independent living especially for mobility impaired passengers who, with BizTweet, do not need to rely on other people to provide information as all the relevant information is delivered directly to their mobile phones. BizTweet, which already supports 43 languages is also a step closer towards a better integration of people with different cultures and languages. Language issues are a constant ‘negative feedback’ for Airports as it is difficult to provide all the information on a terminal with all language possibilities.
Overall, BizTweet aims at making the passenger experience safer and easier whilst also enabling Airports to deliver their service through social media.