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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.
Frankfurt, July 14th, 2021 - Omnevo, leading provider of revenue-increasing digital platform solutions for airports and airlines and part of the AOE Group, and Fraport AG, owner and operator of Germany's largest airport, announced today that Frankfurt Airport goes live with the latest advanced version of Omnevo's award-winning omnichannel e-commerce solution. Additionally, the two companies announced that they have extended their long-term partnership for another five years to further develop the digitalization of the airport's range of products and services for the almost 70 million passengers (before COVID-19) who travel through Frankfurt Airport each year. With go-live, the existing digital solution platform, which Omnevo’s parent company (AOE) had originally developed for Fraport, was migrated to the latest Omnevo product version. Through its original partnership with AOE Fraport utilized the OM³ digital platform (now known as Omnevo) to become the world’s first omnichannel airport focused entirely on omnichannel both before and, especially, during the pandemic. The newly enhanced Omnevo cloud solution enables the operation of a complete airport marketplace solution for all travel retail sales at a fraction of the costs previously required for such a leading ecosystem, creating new revenue opportunities for crisis-hit airports of any size. Thanks to the highly flexible SaaS solution, Fraport has also effectively future-proofed its digital strategy by integrating directly in the Omnevo product roadmap, enabling it to benefit from Omnevo’s strategy of continuous improvements to the solution.
The past year has been extraordinary in so many ways and, while the tragic impact on lives takes precedence, we’ve also had to deal with the huge changes in our working life too. As the crisis developed early last year, I was busy planning in my new role as CEO of Omnevo - AOE’s new specialist product division - positioned as a digital solution pioneer in the travel industry, launching in early 2021. As the crisis grew, this became the most challenging experience of my career, but I’ve been surprised to find that it’s also become one of the most instructive and rewarding experiences too. Creating and launching any new company is always a huge challenge but we suddenly faced extraordinary new barriers as the way we do business had to be transformed. Much of 2020 was spent planning the new company and today, still operates almost exclusively remotely. Many of us, including some of the founders, worked together for almost a year but have still not actually met in person! Yet we already operate successfully in a global network and are scaling and winning new business. Omnevo is a truly virtual organization; this is how we were born and that is how we thrive. In this short time, we’ve already made our mark on this industry, with a culturally diverse, agile and highly committed team working alongside customers of all sizes around the globe. We’re gaining a lot of attention because we are recognized as game changers - and that innovative spirit is integral to our team spirit. We are committed to being the digital challengers and innovators in the travel and mobility industry – an ethos drives us every day. And it’s working. But what is the glue behind this, what makes us successful? Why is it working and, in these bizarre working conditions, how did we manage to get the team so well and engage with our customers so quickly? I’m obviously proud of what we’ve achieved but I want to share my personal perspective on how we made this happen and hope that it will resonate with others in the industry - and, hopefully, help you with your management challenges too.
COVID-19 has caused a near universal consumer adoption of digital far beyond just search and discovery. Globally, across almost every demographic, international lockdowns have got us accustomed to pre-order, pre-select and home delivery for many of our retail and service transactions. These rapid and continuing shifts in digital behavior inevitably affect the post-crisis traveler journey. As flights slowly resume, airlines, airports and associated service providers will no longer enjoy the luxury of resurrecting 'high touch' retail or food & beverage. Shopping and food & beverage are, of course, two of the most essential experiential elements in any travel journey. As travel restarts, travelers will now expect convenient digital access to these types of products as well as an overriding commitment to hygiene, sustainability and safety. And there is every reason to believe that these expectations will extend across the travel life cycle - from airport, to inflight and post flight. If you were an airline now, given the devastating onslaught of the pandemic on revenues and cash flow, just how and where would you start? Where exactly are the incremental revenue generation opportunities and cost savings to be found? Let's start by understanding the three key challenges: