New IBM-powered AI platform to reduce travel expenditure

Travelport and IBM have introduced the first AI platform to intelligently sift through travel data silos and reduce travel costs


Travel commerce platform Travelport has teamed up with IBM to introduce the IBM Travel Manager, which the companies have claimed to be the world's first AI platform for helping businesses manage corporate travel spend.

The software, which is delivered via the IBM cloud and utilizes IBM Watson capabilities, intelligently tracks, manages, predicts and analyzes company travel costs in one place.

"IBM and Travelport are using the power of AI to unlock previously unavailable insights from multiple internal and external data sources," said Elizabeth Pollock, IBM industry client leader for travel and transportation. "Travel managers can use this information to proactively drive improved supplier negotiations via real-time and holistic data, enable budget holders to understand and change spending patterns, and improve travel policy compliance monitoring."

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As annual global business travel spend has been tipped to reach $1.2 trillion in 2018, according to the Global Business Travel Association, reduction of costs has become a vital procedure for corporate travel managers. Current methods of tracking spending involve managers sifting through data siloes cards, expense systems, travel agencies and suppliers for end-to-end visibility of travel finances.

IBM Travel Manager provides travel managers with total access to this siloed information and combines it with travel data from the Travelport global distribution system. This data is used to create real-time predictive analytics which recommends which adjustments in travel booking behavior patterns will most positively impact travel budgets.

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