2019 Agenda: Wednesday, 16 October 2019 | Thursday, 17 October 2019 | Friday, 18 October 2019

Day 1 : Wednesday, 16 October 2019


Level 3 | Room 3010A/B

8:50 AM – 9:00 AM Organiser’s Opening Remarks

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM

Get to the heart of today’s complex travel issues with the expertise and vision that only industry leaders can provide. Join us for keynote presentations and panel discussion, where leaders of major travel industry companies and related partners outline what it takes to succeed, and how they are planning to keep succeeding as the industry continues to move forward. Find out their thoughts on what the major game changers will be, how they are continuing to innovate their business models to remain competitive and their plans for the future of the travel industry.

09:00 - 09:20: Keynote Presentation 1: Why Asia? Why now? Get ready for the next wave of growth

09:20 - 09:40: Keynote Presentation 2: Driving Asia’s next digital revolution  

09:40 - 10:20: Keynote Panel  

10:20 AM - 10:30 AM

ITB Asia 2019 Buyer's Briefing

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

What will disrupt and change the way we travel and do business?

How are technologies transforming products, enabling a seamless customer journey, as well as empowering employees for greater efficiency and creativity?

Vijay Anand, Worldwide Sales & Distribution, VP Travel, Transportation & Hospitality - Asia Pacific, China, Japan, IBM

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Hear from the C-Suite | How can we find true customers in data?

We are making millions of decisions every day based on limited and imperfect data about our customers. What if that data was perfect? In this charming talk, our speaker will share with you how we can tell the true human stories of our travellers from data, visualising even the mundane details of their lives and transforming the abstract and uncountable into something that can be seen, felt and directly reconnected to how we offer personalised journeys for customers.

Senior representative, Ctrip

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Hear from the C-Suite | The rise of lifestyle brands in travel

Why are brands like Apple, Disney and Nike among the world’s most valuable? Because they’re able to embody a lifestyle, offering consumers access to an emotional connection that goes well beyond their product offering. As more travel companies look to redefine their offerings around the lifestyle brand concept, often with limited resources to do so, what strategies will they use to grow and thrive?

Senior representative, Banyan Tree Hotels & Resorts

12:00 PM - 12:20 PM

Happiness Lunch Talk | Happiness, Without Seeking It

Happiness has been the subject of intense interest throughout human history. Research has shown that happiness has a positive influence on health, productivity and even stress reduction. However, the search for happiness could also put us on rollercoaster ride. Could there be something more than just feeling happy? Kathirasan K will enlighten us about Happiness from a Mindfulness perspective.

Kathirasan K, Founder of Centre for Mindfulness & Director of Positive Performance

12:20 PM - 12:40 PM

Happiness Lunch Talk | The secret wisdom behind unlocking your natural genius

Everybody is a natural genius, but not everybody knows what their genius is. This goes beyond intelligence and IQ, as it’s who you are at your core that makes you special. What makes us unhappy is when we are not aligned with who we are. It dims our light and we are a shadow of who we are meant to be. But when you discover and utilise your unique talents and gifts you feel grounded, live with purpose and are happy as you are sharing your natural awesomeness with the world. Find out how you can unlock your natural genius, so you can shine in all you do.

Key Takeaways

  • What is genius?
  • 3 Steps to unlocking your natural genius
  • The huge benefits of living your genius

Anji Hallewell, Southeast Asia’s Leading Self-Mastery & Performance Coach, Professional Speaker, Trainer, Author, WomenLines Influencer and Founder of Natural Genius Academy

12:40 PM - 13:00 PM

Happiness Lunch Talk | From Google to Flowers: Where happiness hides and how to find it

Steven Feiner, Co-Founder & CEO of A Better Florist, contributing author at TechCrunch, Huffington Post, Forbes, Tech In Asia, e27, ex-Googler and strategy consultant hoping to change the world one smile at a time

13:00 PM - 13:30 PM

Lunch Actually: How dating & travel can be a big happy business

Violet Lim, CEO & Co-Founder, Lunch Actually

13:30 PM - 14:00 PM

The Future of Tech Panel

New technology continues to shape the way that people think and shop for travel. 

Airlines across the globe are massively investing in innovation that will upscale their business model, while travel agencies are looking to technology that will aggregate content and evolve their customer experience to reflect their changing expectations. Experts from across the travel ecosystem will come together to talk about the hottest topics in travel, including distribution transformation, operational efficiency, revenue growth, and will address how technology is revolutionizing the traveler’s journey of tomorrow.

The session would cover:

  • Deep-dive into the mindset of today’s travellers, and how they leverage technology
  • On overview of emerging technologies, and which is believed to have the biggest impact
  • What measures are travel companies adopting to stay relevant
  • The dynamics of distribution


  • Bindu Bhatia, Managing Director, CWT Asia Pacific, Carlson Wagonlit Travel
  • Joanne Sully, Vice President & Regional General Manger, Australia & Southeast Asia, AMEX GBT - American Express Global Business Travel
  • Christian Suwarna, CEO, Traveloka Experience
  • Ru Yi, General Manager, Ctrip Singapore
  • Additional panelists to be announced


  • Todd Arthur, Vice President, Sabre Travel Network
14:00 PM - 14:30 PM

14:30 PM - 15:00 PM

Hear from the C-Suite | Fireside Chat: Hotel 2.0: How the hotel of the future needs to be everything to everyone

Think of this as mixed-use 2.0. As consumer demands and mobile technology evolve, hoteliers are becoming smarter about designing their spaces to accommodate our multitasking lives.


  • Anchalika Kijkanakorn, Managing Director & Founder, AKARYN Hotel Group (AHG)
  • Tony Chisholm, COO, GCP Hospitality

15:00 PM - 15:30 PM

Hotels & Tech: Hotels & alternative accommodation

Just as challenging as it is for Airbnb to offer more hotel-like options, it seems in some ways even more daunting for hotel companies to start offering more Airbnb-like accommodations. As hotels finally embrace home-sharing, now what?

Mindy Teo, Vice President, Brand & Marketing, The Ascott Limited

15:30 PM - 16:00 PM

Airlines & Travel Distribution: The digital airlines

In January 2018, Singapore Airlines (SIA) launched its Digital Innovation Blueprint. The objective is too catalyse digital opportunities and enhance Singapore’s development as a travel and aviation hub in the region.

  • How is SIA nurturing digital aviation and travel technology start-ups, SMEs and broader communities of partners in adjacent industries?
  • How does SIA define a real purpose for its Digital Transformation and get significant adoption across the organisation?
  • How to measure real business impact of Digital Innovation
  • What are the main obstacles, challenges and how to face and overcome them?

Jerome Thil, Vice President, Digital Innovation, Singapore Airlines

16:00 PM - 16:30 PM

Conference Session on Air Travel

Andrew Cowen, Executive Chairman & CEO, Mango Aviation

16:30 PM - 17:00 PM

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

Insights & Ideas | Future of corporate travel in Asia

Current business travel solutions are designed for large corporations and traditional business travellers. The unmanaged travel space in Asia, which is increasingly dominated by millennials, needs a simpler and more flexible solution: one that keeps costs low, allows a level of flexibility for business travellers and gathers all data and expenses into a single, easy-to-use interface.

Prashant Kirtane, Founder & CEO, Travelstop

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Insights & Ideas | Destination services for corporate clients

Hugo Slimbrouck, Director of Strategic Partnerships & SITE Past President, Ovation Global DMC

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Insights & Ideas | Corporate travel in China

While China is an attractive market, it’s traditionally been a tough place for corporate travel. How are things done? What are the complications7? And how to stay ahead?

Dr. Carl Jones, VP, Head of Travel, Asia-Pacific and Greater China, SAP Concur

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM

Taking global trends in travel management and applying them in Asia: A buyer, supplier and TMC perspective

In a global world is it enough to just focus on local trends. Is it possible to make sure that your business is prepared for what is coming next by learning from other markets even though their customers have differing needs? What are the global trends that are emerging in corporate travel and will soon come to the Asia region? How can you prepare for them from a buyer, TMC and supplier perspective. What needs to change in our thinking to be able to think global but act local. Who and where can we learn from to benefit from their mistakes and learnings?

David Hughes, Managing Director, Asia Pacific, UNIGLOBE Travel International (co-presentation with a client)

12:30 PM - 13:00 PM

Insights & Ideas | The secrets of effective business travel procurement: How to create and manage a successful corporate travel programme

How to achieve lower travel costs, enhanced productivity, dependable support, and improved control over the corporate travel programme?

13:00 PM - 13:30 PM

Insights & Ideas | The new world of loyalty: Why are employees booking outside company travel policy?

13:30 PM - 14:00 PM

Insights & Ideas | One size does not fit all: Booking tools and technologies in corporate travel

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

A digital co-marketing playbook for DMOs and online travel players


  • Craig Hewett, Co-Founder, Wego
  • James Huang, Director, Marketing Technology & MDM, APAC, Wego

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Conference Session by GuestScores

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Travel 2020 – Innovations and new trends

Eran Shust, Co-Founder & CEO, Splitty

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM

How social media technologies are transforming the travel and hospitality industry

For today’s travel and hospitality brands, the shift to social media creates new opportunities to innovate for improved business outcomes. We’ll walk you through these opportunities and offer ways to make the most of them.

• Strategies and best practices for travel and hospitality brands to drive business results on social
• Research findings and industry insights on how social is driving and transforming the customer journey
• Regional case studies on brands and industry experts who are leading the pack on social

Senior representative, TripAdvisor

13:00 PM - 13:30 PM

Sessions on payment technologies

Eric Liebman, Global Head of Travel, Ingenico ePayments

14:00 PM - 14:30 PM

Tourism Innovation

Hosted by Taiwan Tourism Bureau, Ministry of Transportation and Communications, R.O.C. (Taiwan)

14:30 PM - 15:00 PM

Future-proofing for transformative tourism experience and businesses

Poh Chi Chuan, Director, Digital Transformation, Singapore Tourism Board

15:30 PM - 16:00 PM

Conference Session by STR

Senior representative, STR

16:00 PM - 16:30 PM

Reinventing digital travel with in-video machine learning: How to offer more values to customers than just a lower price

With such a plethora of digital travel sites and apps, creating a real differentiation is becoming difficult. Yes, price is always a good place to start, but it is no longer enough to obtain user loyalty. Even user experiences titled “Hassle-Free”, “Effortless”, “Uncomplicated” - are not enough. User consumption habits are changing, and with user attention span dropping as short as 8 seconds – we need to change with them. The digital travel landscape is in need of a face lift, that will turn the entire trip cycle - into FUN, EXCITING, and COMMUNAL experiences. This session will provide tips and ideas as to obtaining user retention and long-term loyalty, by providing him/her added values beyond price comparisons and reviews.

Dr. Asaf Toker, Co-Founder & CEO, SeeVoov

16:30 PM - 17:00 PM

Conference Session by Cloudbeds

Adam Harris, CEO & Founder, Cloudbeds

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

Latest Asian travel trends 2019 and forecast 2020

Rolf Freitag, CEO, IPK International

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Deal Sites, Tours & Activities | Digital tour distribution - How to get make the most for your brand via OTAs

Brendan Roberts, Global Head of Business Development, TourRadar

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Deal Sites, Tours & Activities | Conference Session by Meeting Point

Roula Jouny, Group Managing Director, Meeting Point Hotels & Meeting Point International (DMC)

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM

Deal Sites, Tours & Activities | Conference Session by Rezgo

Stephen Joyce, CEO, Rezgo

12:30 PM - 13:00 PM

Deal Sites, Tours & Activities Looking beyond the GDS: Its impacts on Multicity Travel

Several online travel agencies and traditional travel agencies are starting to move beyond the traditional queries carried out in GDSs, doing everything from Virtual Interlining, shopping across multiple PCCs/GDSs, integrating LCC content, or breaking up itineraries into open-jaws and one-ways. We will explore the impact of these new search methods on pricing and customer service as well as what customer segments they work best for.

Andres Collart, CEO,
Trip Ninja

13:00 PM - 13:30 PM

Applying big data to destination marketing & making it meaningful

Sarah Griffin, Head of Destination Marketing APAC, Travelport (co-presentation with client)

13:30 PM - 14:00 PM

Perfecting your digital brand and growing your following: Insider tips from professionals

Matt Gibson, CEO, UpThink

14:00 PM - 14:30 PM

Conference Session by Grail Insights

Vivek Neb, Managing Director, Grail Insights

14:30 PM - 15:00 PM

Conference Session on Facebook marketing

Senior representative, Facebook

15:00 PM - 15:30 PM

Conference Session by Twitter

15:30 PM - 16:00 PM

16:00 PM - 16:30 PM

The NEW membership economy: How to engage users and boost loyalty for your travel app

David Bochsler, Managing Director, APJ Region, Leanplum

16:30 PM - 17:00 PM

Conference Session on YouTube, Netflix, & video marketing

10:30 AM - 11:00 AM

Conference session on understanding Muslim travelers and how to market to them

Sujimy Mohamad, Marketing Consultant & Content Creator, Screenbox

11:00 AM - 11:30 AM

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

What makes the Halal tourism sector so attractive for investors?

Rolf Freitag, CEO, IPK International

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM

7 ways to make Muslim travellers love your destination

Do you have a beautiful hotel or resort? Maybe a diverse and welcoming destination or an attraction to die for, but you just can’t entice Muslim’s to visit? Join this session as we discover 7 ways to make Muslim travellers flock to your product. From the transformation of the online halal travel space to showing off on Instagram, these are 7 tips you won’t want to miss.

Nabeel Shariff, Director, Rihaala

12:30 PM - 13:00 PM

How to build a Muslim-friendly tour environment: A case study of National Alishan Scenic Area, Taiwan

Ustaz.Ishag Shiao-Chi, Ma, Chairman and General Consultant (former Imam of Taipei Grand Mosque), International Muslim Tourism Industry Development Ass. and Taiwan INHART Halal Certification Authority

13:00 PM - 14:00 PM

The digitization of Muslim travel

Erica Annuar, Head of Content, Tripfez

14:00 PM - 15:00 PM

Conference Session by CrescentRating

15:00 PM - 15:30 PM

The Modern Muslim Millennial


  • Nazirah Ashari, Strategy Director, TBWA Kuala Lumpur
  • Steve Walls, Disruption Guy, TBWA Worldwide
16:00 PM - 17:00 PM

Panel: Unlocking the Muslim Millennial travel market

Winnie Tan, CEO & Founder, TripZilla

10:30 AM - 12:30 AM

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