The travel industry no longer exists in a bubble.
Unprecedented technological, political, social and economic change is redefining how and why we travel. This convergence opens up the travel industry to a new realm of opportunities and threats. We help travel companies make sense of these forces by taking a holistic approach to our custom research and thought leadership initiatives. Please explore some of our most recent engagements:
Assessing fresh concepts in hospitality.
LUFT worked with a private equity group managing approximately 3 billion in capital to assess an opportunity to invest in a niche luxury accommodations concept. The asset in question was a small portfolio of independently branded beach-front properties, catering to an upper-income clientele base with a passion for water sports. The buying team found existing cash flow and economics favorable, but wanted third-party validation of the concept to ensure long-run potential for growth and alignment with market trends. As part of the deliverable, LUFT generated a comprehensive report outlining 1) the total market size and projected opportunity to grow the brand and portfolio of properties 2) shifting trends in the alternative accommodations market and the role that platforms like Airbnb might have as a potential distribution channel 3) changing habits in luxury travel consumption, particularly in "rustic" luxury category, and whether said lifestyle brand aligned with a longer-run trends rather than fads.
Assessing acquisition targets for tour operators
LUFT worked with a large U.S. based guided tour operator to assess potential to expand into new experience categories. The client, an established brand with a loyal but aging customer base, wanted to diversify its overall offering by adding fresh inventory aimed at a younger demographic. Part of this strategy included a possible acquisition. The core diligence challenge was to understand a fragmented market of active guided tour operators with limited publicly available information on market size and opportunities, company revenues, margins, willingness to sell and other factors that would eventually factor into a potential buy offer. As part of the deliverable, LUFT generated a detail report with findings presented to senior leadership.
Sizing opportunities in online travel
LUFT founder Luke Bujarski is an expert and senior publishing analyst specializing in the ever-changing online travel landscape. His experience extends nearly a decade of coverage of the big online travel agencies, metasearch platforms, traditional travel agents and supplier-direct strategies across hospitality, airlines, rail and tours and activities. Prior to launching LUFT, Luke was research director for Phocuswright Europe, and the founder of Skift Research.
Aligning brand with the New Luxury consumer
LUFT worked with a global hospitality hotel chain to analyze global shifts in affluent class behavior, attitude and preference toward luxury goods and services. The client wanted to understand consumer nuances across the Asia, Europe, and the Americas, in order to align brand messaging as part of a global hotel brand portfolio restructuring. LUFT designed, administered, and analyzed data from a 50-question consumer survey launched to over 25,000 consumers globally. Research results were used to help improve the client's position and image as a relevant brand in luxury hospitality.
Helping destinations target new in-bound opportunities.
LUFT worked with a leading Latin American national tourism board to assess future opportunity with Russia's growing travel consumer base. The agency noted incremental year-over-year growth in visitor volumes from Russia, and wanted to know how additional marketing effort would grow this visitor base over time. LUFT stepped in to provide market intelligence i.e. sizing the overall point-of-sale opportunity at the city level. Part of the work involved sourcing and collaborating with a local research firm to execute on a 20-minute CATI (Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing) study across an identified base of urban markets. Results were used to validate additional marketing spend on the Russia market.
A few words about our founder...
- "Luke is an expert on online travel and hotel distribution. We collaborated with Luke and his research team on their big annual state of hotel distribution report, which yielded many critical insights into the landscape. I can highly recommend Luke as a researcher and thought leader." - Andrea Riccarrelli, Global PR Lead, Trivago
- "Luke is an expert in all things travel. I highly recommend his research and advisory work for both public equity and VC/PE investors along with travel industry participants . More importantly, Luke is a trustworthy and ethical person and someone I would recommend working with as a client or colleague." - Jared Wein, Senior Analyst at Markston International LLC
- Luke is seasoned and savvy research professional. He is thoughtful and intuitive - I believe the white paper he wrote for me while at CI&T went through one round of edits, which we all know is unheard of. This speaks to his ability to deeply comprehend and interpret the message to best meet market trends, while making it relevant and engaging for the target audience. - Global Marketing Lead, Ci&T