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AOE, a leading global provider of services and Enterprise Open Source solutions for digital transformation and digital business models, today announced a 13 million EUR investment from German private equity firm LEA Partners with its LEA Mittelstandspartner Fund.
The partnership represents the first of its kind for AOE and will help to further accelerate the company’s profitable growth, currently at more than 40 percent year-on-year.
“The introduction of our OM³ Suite, which we first implemented at Frankfurt Airport, marked an important strategic and economic milestone in our company’s history. OM³ has generated an extremely high level of interest in the aviation industry,” commented Kian Gould, Founder and CEO of AOE. “In order to meet the demand of airports and airlines for the solution, we will continue to scale our development and operations teams while adding to our global locations. In addition, the capital from LEA Partners will enable us to significantly accelerate our product development.”
LEA Partners has established itself as a strong and entrepreneurial-minded partner for growing technology and software companies that are driving transformative change in their industries. Also in the aviation industry, LEA Partners established a significant global network following successful investments in companies such as BEONTRA, a provider focusing on planning and optimization solutions for airports. As part of the investment, BEONTRA founder and current LEA Partner’s Managing Director Christian Roth will join the AOE Advisory Board.
Sebastian Müller, Managing Director of LEA Partners added, “We are constantly looking for strong, innovative companies that help their clients digitize existing business models or create entire digitally-based strategies from the ground up. We have been impressed by the drive and passion of the AOE team and their vision and ability to develop and implement such an industry-changing, complex and multifaceted solution in just twelve months from the initial concept phase. The company is well on its way in establishing itself as a true industry leader and we are pleased to support the management team as they enter their next phase of continued growth.”
Sources: Sabre Airlines Solutions, GuestLogix, Frost & Sullivan
AOE’s award-winning Omnichannel Multi Merchant Marketplace (OM³) helps multi-retailer venues such as airports, shopping malls or integrated resorts to seamlessly fuse offline and online experience into one full-featured suite of software applications and services. OM³ provides a unique platform for omnichannel retailing and offers customers numerous useful online and offline shopping-, service- and real-time information options.
AOE is a leading global technology service provider and consultancy, offering Open Source-based Enterprise solutions for digital transformation and Omnichannel E-Commerce as well as mobile apps and web portals. The company has headquarters in Germany and the USA and branch offices in Dubai, Zurich and Hong Kong. More than 250 employees support international corporations in the operative digitization of business models through the implementation of open, scalable and secure solutions. AOE relies on excellence and is organized as an agile company.
LEA Partners is an entrepreneurial-minded multi-stage private equity firm investing in growth technology and software companies that are driving transformative change in their industries. Founded in 2002, LEA has advised on the investment of over 300 million EUR in more than 40 companies. Operating out of Karlsruhe, one of Europe's largest IT clusters, its mission is to fund and support visionary founders and executives by leveraging them with practical, hands-on growth expertise to achieve market leadership.
A three-part series of blogs showing how LCCs of any size have a proven, low-cost entry option to seize the digital initiative in driving their ancillary revenue recovery.
After 20-months of Zoom sessions it was amazing to be out in the real world again this month, flying the globe and actually meeting industry colleagues in person! Following the World Aviation Festival (WAF) in London I moved on to Future Travel Experience (FTE) in Las Vegas and it was so encouraging to find that these two major industry events, 8,000 km apart, echoed the industry’s increasing buzz around the digitalization of ancillary revenue. Sadly, I’ve now been brought back to earth by the latest twist in the crisis as Omicron looks to inflict yet another challenging phase. However, after two years of disruption the aviation industry knows it has to adapt to each new challenge and strengthen its ability to respond just as long as governments finally realize that locking down borders is a very short-sighted approach (unless you are an island state) and haven’t stopped any of the previous 4 COVID waves in any meaningful way. If the last two years have taught us anything, it is that airlines, like governments, will need to think a lot more globally than locally.
December’s World Aviation Festival in London was a great opportunity to bring the industry together and, although attendance was inevitably lower than normal, there was a strong conference program that carried a mood of guarded optimism. Best of all, I was delighted to see just how strongly the focus was on real action to drive ancillary revenue and recovery. Much of 2021 has been spent waiting for a recovery to be established and many airlines have understandably been hesitant (or unable) to commit to new investment or major change in their customer operations. The long hoped-for recovery has been impossible to forecast accurately and many airlines opted to simply ‘hunker down’ and wait until a clearer path can be seen through the storm. That strategy carries deep risks. We now face a new phase of crisis as Omicron sadly develops its global presence but the fact is that the world will continue to turn, people will continue to travel, the crisis will eventually recede, and traffic will return. Airlines need to be preparing right now to create the customer experience that the recovery will demand. Yes, the picture of how the 2022 travel market will look in recovery is still blurred right now - but the key point is that we do already know exactly what the returning customer looks like and what they want. We have a clear understanding of the experience they want - and we have the digital tools to deliver that experience.