Winding Tree provides blockchain-technology-based platforms for online reservation systems. Among its partners are hotels and airlines including Lufthansa, Air France-KLM, and airplane and airport services provider Swissport, according to a statement. It has now announced a partnership with Etihad Airways.
Because Winding Tree partners use the technology as their distribution platform, they can reduce costs by avoiding major players with high margins. According to Tristan Thomas, Director of Digital and Innovation at Etihad, the market has traditionally been dominated by these distribution systems.
Etihad gained an opportunity thanks to the partnership with Winding Tree, he explained. He said: “Very few have chosen to disrupt the distribution world and that’s because those are major players with very significant margins that have acted to keep that kind of a closed shop.”
Winding Tree gives airlines such as Etihad the chance to bypass intermediaries and contact customers directly, thus excluding established distribution systems providers and saving costs. Pedro Anderson, Chief Operating Officer of Winding Tree, highlighted: “When there’s innovation, you start to have disruption, you have competition which results in better prices for the consumer.”