Former TFWA President Maingreaud named on SKYdeals Advisory Board

By Luke Barras-hill |

Alain Maingreaud has taken up a position on the Advisory Board of SKYdeals.

E-commerce travel retail platform SKYdeals has appointed Alain Maingreaud as a permanent member of its Advisory Board.

The erstwhile TFWA President and former Managing Director and Commercial Director will assist SKYdeals Co-founder and CEO Julien Sivan in accelerating the company’s strategy within travel retail.

Maingreaud was recruited into the role last month, TRBusiness has learned.

The French travel retail start-up offers airline travellers the opportunity to avail of thousands of offers on duty free products and services during their flights.

Customers can have products delivered to gate, a home address, or collect items on arrival at their destination airport.

Railways and cruise ships can also benefit from the connectivity services of the company founded by Julien Sivan and Céline Braems in 2017.

SKYdeals Co-founder and CEO Julien Sivan.

‘EXTREMELY STRATEGIC’ APPOINTMENT

Sharing the news on LinkedIn, Sivan paid tribute to Maingreaud’s ‘unique knowledge and drive’ as ‘invaluable’ in SKYdeal’s quest to digitise industry revenues.

In comments shared with TRBusiness, Sivan said: “The addition of Alain Maingreaud to the SKYdeals board will be of great benefit to us.

“His unique expertise and his deep knowledge of the players and their organisation make him extremely strategic for the development of SKYdeals.”

Sivan says SKYdeals, the brainchild of French digital agency Business Lab, has been on a learning curve since launching in 2018 with the aim of reinventing inflight retail through onboard connectivity and its brand of inflight ‘Shoppertainment’.

“For all of us, a team of experts in e-commerce and digital, it was not very difficult to re-enchant the shopping experience for passengers and reach buying rates never seen before,” Sivan continued. “However, we quickly had to deal with the uniqueness and complexity of the travel retail market.

“Indeed, marketplace, drop shipping, click & collect, home delivery, direct sales are all concepts inherent to e-commerce and popular with passengers but need to be adjusted to the reality of the travel retail market and the complex relationships between its stakeholders.”

The post-pandemic travel retail landscape offers a ‘tremendous opportunity’, according to SKYdeals.

NEW GROWTH DYNAMICS

“After the crisis that has shaken us all – and that now seems to be behind us – the market seems to be entering a new dynamic of growth with the will of major players to reinvent themselves and to innovate.

“For us, this is a tremendous opportunity not to be missed, and, in order to penetrate the market properly, we need experts to help us make the new digital concepts compatible with the travel retail eco-system.”

Alain Maingreaud added: “I have always been interested in innovation (in general but in travel retail particularly) and I am delighted to be able to help the development of a start-up in this sector.”

In addition to offering exclusive deals to passengers, SKYdeals has also created what it calls its ‘dynamic commercial flight plan’ technology that offers entertainment to passengers during their flight (fly-over offers, group buying offers, instant sales).

The solution is being deployed with airlines in France, the US, the Middle East and soon in Asia.

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