Interview with Jerome Perez, Chief Product Officer
Early May 2021, we announced the acquisition of our long-term partner, Air Cube, and incorporated the team into our Infare family. Jerome Perez, former Air Cube Founder-CEO, joined Infare as Chief Product Officer, with the ambition to serve the airline industry, scale our operations and continue innovating.
We recently spoke with Jerome to learn more about his role at Infare, and how he plans to drive product innovation for our customers’ benefit.
Could you please tell me about you and your journey in travel tech for those not familiar with you?
French by nationality, born in Morocco with roots in France, Spain, and Italy, I consider myself a Mediterranean. I love spending time on the sea along with my family. Living in Nice makes it possible and is a good place to be.
I founded Air Cube, at the end of 2010, with the conviction that a travel IT company should combine true business expertise and customer knowledge on top of technical capabilities. I started the adventure on my own but quickly grew the team to inject expertise in Data Science. Before creating my own company, I spent the past 25 years working in the travel industry for major players such as Airbus, Thales, and Amadeus. Those years allowed me to embrace multiple travel industry sectors and eventually understand what is at stake for an aircraft manufacturer, an airport, an airline, a travel agency, IT vendors, and passengers.
While I turned a page, joining Infare due to Air Cube’s acquisition, I do not see this as the end of a book but more as the beginning of a new chapter in a good story. I am thrilled to be part of Infare as CPO, and I cannot wait to put my ideas into action.
How do you reflect on your journey with Air Cube? What are some of the key milestones you are particularly proud of?
How will it influence your work at Infare?
Creating value for customers has been the starting point and the key focus of Air Cube, in opposition to valuing the company in the first place. The value of the company is primarily a factor of the value it brings to its customers.
There are no specific milestones I am proud of; actually, I am proud of waiving milestones and making sure Air Cube was able to adapt itself continuously to changes, be agile enough to deliver solutions based on customers’ expectations.
Could you please describe your role at Infare? What shall we expect coming out of your team this year?
My role as a Chief Product Officer at Infare is to make sure our customers get the best out of the travel data we collect. In other words, turn the travel data we collect into actionable information for our customers.
Being a “travel data value driver” has always been part of Infare’s DNA. The role of the product team will be to accelerate the drive to be at the forefront of the travel industry and satisfy our airline customers.
Has the crisis impacted the airlines’ needs for data products? How have customers’ needs evolved with time?
Like in any crisis, what matters the most remain. Airlines kept their interest in our data products.
But the crisis also stressed the importance for airlines to be more agile in the way they sell. Therefore, airlines are speeding up the implementation of NDC, Dynamic Pricing, or other initiatives that support the reshaping of their pricing and distribution model.
What does it mean for Infare? What are we doing to innovate in this area?
For Infare, as a travel data provider, it means that we need to be at the forefront of this accelerated transformation. In the very first place, it implies actively interacting with all our customers and partners, gathering their needs, and structuring our development strategy to deliver on time.
We already have several initiatives going on with major airlines and IT partners. Some of those initiatives are already moving into our product releases roadmap like it is the case for enriching our data catalogue with search data and shopping data.
How do you see the rapport evolving between big data providers and Airlines?
Regarding the pace of transformation, we are building a marketplace where airlines will have the ability to choose the data types they want, the level of aggregation they want, and how they want to consume it technically (Analytics, API, Feeds, etc.). I will add that our “give to get” model has always been part of the DNA of Infare and will remain, getting to the next level where airlines will decide how much they want to share data and get the same in return. We are invested in doing our part in assuring airlines become more profitable and come out of the crisis stronger. We are also cooperating with Airlines for them to regain the control and value that their data held.