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Travel Industry Mavericks Discuss Klook’s $200M Investment & The Challenges Facing OTAs


The brand new Travel Industry Mavericks series kicks off with a discussion about the challenges facing OTAs.

Peter Syme and Christian Watts join me today to discuss what is happening in the tourism industry and share their predictions for the future. We also discuss why we decided to create the Travel Industry Mavericks round table series on the Tourpreneur Podcast.

Christian Watts and Peter Syme will be inviting guests for no-holds-barred conversations, no boring corporate chats allowed, who do you want to hear them having a chat with? Email us your guest suggestions here.

The Travel Industry Mavericks discuss how Klook has received a 200-million dollar investment and how they may use this revenue injection. We explore the challenges many major OTAs are facing during the pandemic and which booking platforms will generate interest when customers and tour operators are local to each other. Christian and Peter also reveal how the COVID vaccine numbers may impact the tourism industry and how the hotel business model may change once the travel industry re-opens.


“You can sacrifice everything, but you can’t sacrifice your core. That’s where you built the business.”

Peter Syme


This week on Tourpreneur, the Tour Operator Podcast:

  • Klook 200 million dollar investment and tuning the OTA to the Asian market.
  • How the app-driven buying experience differs in Asia.
  • Building a brand on customers who only purchase your product a few times a year.
  • How cheap employment has created the ‘Human API.’
  • Where Klook is likely to spend its investment?
  • How vaccine numbers may affect where the tourism industry recovers first.
  • Which booking platforms will perform well with local customers.
  • How hotels may change their business model when the travel industry re-opens.
  • The different voices that Christian and Peter would like to hear from on the show

Today’s episode of Tourpreneur is kindly sponsored by Ventrata


Meet Today’s Guests…

Peter Syme

Peter Syme is the Managing Director of 1000 Mile Journeys and is obsessed with adventure travel, having visited more than 120 countries himself. He splits his time between being the Owner/Operator of several small niche adventure travel companies and helping startups as a strategic advisor. He is also a well-known conference speaker, recently speaking in the UK, Germany, Morocco, and the USA.

Christian Watts

Christian Watts is the Founder of Magpie Travel, a SaaS company that focuses on content management for the tour and activities sectors. Best known as the Founder and CEO of City Sightseeing San Francisco, Christian came from the north of England and was one of the early adopters of web-based distribution strategies. He has a BA Hons in Economics and Management from the University of Leeds.


Resources Mentioned