Published on Friday, November 22, 2013

On Holiday Group signs deal with new 'contextual selling' company

On Holiday Group has become the first UK customer of Swiss-based company epteca, which helps travel companies sells ancillary products to their customers.

The 'contextual selling' company, which officially launched in the UK this week, is looking to sign deals with other travel suppliers who want to expand their revenue streams.

"We are close to going live with On Holiday Group and are in the final stages of talks with another online travel agent," said epteca head of UK & Ireland sales Carl Denton, formerly head of aviation planning at First Choice, who joined the company in May.

He said epteca was also in discussions with a traditional tour operator and an airline.

CEO and co-founder Bojan Jokic believes Britain's travel businesses are missing out on more than £200 million in potential sales of ancillary products.

"Recent studies have shown that 54% of travellers would prefer to buy relevant travel related third-party ancillary products and services through their travel supplier," he said.

Jokic said epteca uses technology to identify what customers might need before their trip.

It then communicates with them in a concierge-style, through email or text, sharing useful tips and information, along with product ideas.

For example, someone going on a beach holiday might be advised to buy a waterproof beach bag so they can swim with their phone or watch, or a self-catering family might be offered grocery or nappy deliveries.

"We do not have a specific stock of product to sell. We identify what people might need and then we communicate this to them," said Jokic.

The communication is done at key times, from the booking phase to returning home, and without any mention of the epteca name or branding, he added.

Jokic said there is no cost to the travel provider and epteca takes care of the set-up, which usually takes about six weeks from the time of signing an agreement.

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