Data analytics and cloud investment

Innovative tech: The UK’s biggest airline aspires to be at the bleeding-edge of tech innovation within the sector and is working with Gatwick to create the “airport of the future”. Aiming to be seen as a digital-first business, initiatives include the support of TravelTech startups through its partnership with Founders Factory, utilisation of SAP’s Hybris ecommerce solution to analyse customer data, as well as the development of its award-winning app and exploration into voice, AI and chatbots solutions. Data analytics is being particularly emphasised with the recent appointment of a Chief Data Officer, responsible for the airline’s data strategy, using data to create actionable insights to improve the customer proposition, increase efficiency and drive revenue. One area the company has been investing heavily in is its loyalty scheme, with a new programme being released next year, and it is highly likely this will tie in with future app development.

Growth: This focus on technology is clearly paying off for easyJet, which has enjoyed a successful year, increasing revenues and profits, driven by a 10% increase in passenger numbers. Having acquired Air Berlin one year ago it will continue to focus on the growth of its European branch to offset any potential downturn resulting from Brexit, with long-haul connections created at Paris and Amsterdam, while it has now overtaken Lufthansa as Germany’s largest airline.

Cloud and security: Easyjet will need to ensure its estate is robust and scalable enough to accommodate this growth. It will surely be looking to develop and expand its Azure cloud platform, while it will also need to invest in security provisions to ensure its enlarged footprint is adequately protected. More acquisitions are on the cards in Europe, and any deal could result in a major integration process of IT systems and infrastructure. All of this will be led by the company’s IT Director Dharmini Chauhan, who having only been appointed in August is likely to want to stamp his own authority onto the company’s strategy.

Revenue: £5.89bn

Financial year end: September 30th

IT suppliers: SAP, Microsoft Azure

New appointments this year:

IT Director – Dharmini Chauhan

Chief Data Officer – Luca Zuccoli

Other key contacts:

Head of Digital Strategy – Nicholas Crowther

Head of IT Service Delivery – Jes Reilly