Defining the future of

the aviation industry

14 – 15 November

Hilton Tower Bridge, Tooley Street, London

Speaker announcement

Gonen UsishkinGonen Usishkin, President and Chief Executive Officer, El Al Israel Airlines

Gonen will be delivering the opening keynote on the second day of the conference. Having one of the most recognisable brand names in the world, El Al has carved out a strong market niche based on a high-quality service. Gonen’s vast experience in the industry will provide you with the tools you need to adapt to the newest trends in aviation, engage with new technologies and keep customers satisfied.

Accelerate: Aviation 2018 will bring together the most innovative speakers in the aviation industry, who will share their knowledge and provide real-life examples from their wealth of experience.
Learn how these pioneering speakers are embracing digital transformation, tackling the goldmine of passenger data, personalising the customer experience and dealing with disruption.
You’ll gain insight to help you transform knowledge into profit by keeping operating costs down, processes streamlined and customers coming back for more.

Unrivalled insights

We’ve created two stages that focus on innovation for low-cost carriers and evolution for the full-service carrier, so that you get an in-depth perspective on content that will directly benefit you, tailored to your business model.

Thinking for the future

Whether it’s chatbots selling tickets or data unlocking passenger insights, all the sessions that you’ll attend look to the future of the industry. Hear from experts in design, manufacturing and technology on what the skies of tomorrow will look like so that you can be prepared for take-off.

Ready for the revolution?

Hear from the industry disruptors who are going to be changing the face of flying as you know it! Experience first-hand how they might transform your business, when they present lightning pitches to shine a light on the possibilities of tomorrow’s world.

 More than just content

Take advantage of our drink’s reception on the first night of the conference, as well as the four hours of dedicated networking time built into our agenda, where you can meet peers, strike up meaningful conversations and create connections to help your business grow.

Why attend

Hear the most cutting edge content from our panels of industry experts

Tackle the key issues that airlines will need to address, including distribution, passenger data, personalisation and airline co-operation

Experience first-hand the innovation that is currently happening and learn how to prepare your company for digital transformation

See the next-generation of disruptors who will shake up the aviation industry present their companies

“A valuable event with a thoughtfully compiled agenda and a good range of speakers”


Chief Executive Officer, Virgin Atlantic Airways

“Important inspiring annual conference with high-quality attendance across the aviation industry”


Chief Commercial Officer, Finnair


Chris Browne

Chris Browne

Chief Operations Officer, EasyJet

Adel Al Ali

Adel Abdullah Ali

Group Chief Executive Officer, Air Arabia

Lars Sandahl Sorensen

Lars Sandahl Sørensen

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, SAS


Gonen Usishkin

President and Chief Executive Officer, El Al Israel Airlines

Christina Foerster

Christina Foerster

Chief Executive Officer, Brussels Airlines

Henk Gerzee

Henk Jan Gerzee

Chief Digital Officer, Royal Schipol Group

Sebastian Mikosz - Kenya Airways

Sebastian Mikosz

Chief Executive Officer, Kenya Airways

Dupsy Abiola

Dupsy Abiola

Head of Global Innovation, International Airlines Group

More Speakers


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Day 1 Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Day 2 Thursday, 15 November 2018


Welcome address and chair's opening remarks

Session 1

Leaders' forum - building an airline fit for the 21st century

Keynote address

Towards an equal sky: addressing gender balance in the pilot community

Chris Browne
Chris Browne

Chief Operations Officer , EasyJet


Connected skies: leading the way in inflight connectivity

Frederik van Essen - Inmarsat
Frederik van Essen

Senior Vice President, Market and Business Development , Inmarsat

Panel discussion

Innovating for success: growing a global carrier

  • Are global carriers leading the change in the aviation industry?
  • How can airlines capitalise on the upcoming increase in demand?
  • What are the key barriers to further open skies and how can they be overcome?
  • Can the regulatory framework be fixed or is there need to start afresh?
  • Alliances or joint ventures: what will be the primary form of airline cooperation?
  • New opportunities: discussing the most exciting growth markets
  • What are the keys to expanding into unexplored territories?
  • How are airlines using digital innovation to their advantage?
  • Which technology offers the greatest potential for a step-change in aviation?
  • Who or what might the next great disruptor in aviation be?

Adel Al Ali
Adel Abdullah Ali

Group Chief Executive Officer , Air Arabia

Christina Foerster
Christina Foerster

Chief Executive Officer , Brussels Airlines

Sebastian Mikosz - Kenya Airways
Sebastian Mikosz

Chief Executive Officer , Kenya Airways

Frederik van Essen - Inmarsat
Frederik van Essen

Senior Vice President, Market and Business Development , Inmarsat

Fireside chat

Fleets that are fit for purpose: designing, defining and digitising fleets

  • What is the right fleet make-up for tomorrow’s world?
  • How can carriers ensure their fleet is flexible enough to weather future change?
  • In what ways could an oversupply of planes affect the industry?
  • What must airlines do in terms of digitisation to ensure they keep pace with fleet innovation?
  • Have low fuel costs allowed inefficient planes to fly for too long?
  • Should carriers play a bigger role in fleet development or should R&D be left to manufacturers?

Chris Browne
Chris Browne

Chief Operations Officer , EasyJet

Lars Sandahl Sorensen
Lars Sandahl Sørensen

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer , SAS



Session 2

The next wave of distribution – a panacea for profitability

Panel discussion

Reimagining distribution for the digital age

  • How can airlines put passengers at the centre of the flight shopping experience?
  • How will technological changes affect the way flights are booked?
  • Preparing for the mobile dominance: understanding apps as first point of interaction.
  • Digital design: understanding the wants of the customer when creating online presence.
  • How might AI allow for more seamless customer interactions?
  • Will virtual assistants evolve to become the dominant form of booking?
  • In what ways will VR tech provide new opportunities for marketing?
  • How can airlines reverse the negative view of direct channel booking?

David Garcia
David Garcia

Chief Commercial Officer , Vueling

Paul Sies
Paul Sies

Chief Commercial Officer , Air Malta

Candice Iyog
Candice Iyog

Vice President, Marketing and Distribution , Cebu Pacific

Andreas Koester
Andreas Köster

Senior Director Sales UK, Ireland & Iceland , Lufthansa


Advisory session

Case study | IATA’s blockchain program

Taking transactions back in-house

In late 2017, the IATA Financial Committee set up a pilot scheme to investigate the ways that blockchain payment systems could benefit airlines. If successful, the system could mean that banking fees become a thing of the past, bringing an estimated $7.7 billion back into airlines’ hands. Juan Iván Martín will share how the scheme is progressing and discuss the potential impact of blockchain the industry.

Juan Iván Martín - IATA
Juan Iván Martín

Head of Innovation , IATA


Overcoming limitations: exploring the opportunities of the NDC

  • Utilising the potential of the the NDC
  • Benefits for the customer: using the additional flexibility to provide more choice
  • What effect will the NDC have on pricing strategies?
  • Could low-cost carriers penetrate the business market using the NDC?
  • How can the NDC unlock revenues in emerging markets?

Anthony Doyle
Anthony Doyle

Senior Director, Global Sales Corporate Development & Operations , Air Canada



Session 3

Full Service Stage | Low-Cost Stage

Full-Service Stage
Low-Cost Stage
Fireside chat

Death of premium classes?

  • Are there enough paying passengers to justify a first class service?
  • How will VR technologies affect business travel?
  • Are convertible cabins a realistic way of accurately matching demand?
  • How can airlines use basic and premium economy seats to gain passengers?

David Geer VirginAtlantic
David Geer

Senior Vice President of Revenue Management, Digital & Distribution , Virgin Atlantic

Linda-Patrice Celestino
Linda-Patrice Celestino

Vice President Guest Experience and Service Deliver , Ethiad


Unlocking the opportunities of conversational commerce

  • What opportunities does conversational commerce present for improving customer experience?
  • Defining your use case: understanding what the customer really needs
  • Multi-platform, multi-lingual: achieving omni-channel nirvana in a global setting
  • Early successes: stories from Finnair, Volaris, Scoot and more

Jonathan Newman - Caravelo
Jonathan Newman

Chief Commercial Officer , Caravelo


A technological upgrade: assessing the state of play for overhauling legacy systems

  • How can airlines modernise their systems to increase efficiency and lower costs?
  • Understanding how artificial intelligence, cloud tech and
  • A common tongue? Understanding the potential of translation capabilities to transform the industry
  • How can longer-running carriers learn from carriers born in the digital age?

Case study | All Nippon Airways

Travelling to the future: evolving and diversifying traditional business models

In March, ANA announced a four year competition for creation of avatars that could ‘rapidly and efficiently distribute skills and hands-on expertise to distant geographic locations’, expanding the understanding of traditional travel.






Best practice in low-cost long-haul: flying without a hitch

  • How can a sustainable low-cost, long-haul model be created?
  • What are the keys to keeping operational costs low?
  • Do low-cost long-haul carriers need to be the first adopters of technology?
  • Is a fuel-efficient fleet the true factor in success?

Matthew Wood
Matthew Wood

Vice President, Strategic Network and Fleet Development , Norwegian


Advisory session

Case study | Southwest Airlines

Low-cost not low-care: creating corporate culture that encourages customer loyalty

Regularly ranked as one of the best places to work in America, Southwest Airlines has strived to foster a corporate culture that values its employees. As such, staff fell valued and willingly go above-and-beyond for their airline – often at the benefit for the passenger. Cheryl Hughey will discuss how creating a culture of corporate care encourages staff allegiance and how that trickles-down to both customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Cheryl Hughey
Cheryl Hughey

Managing Director, Culture , Southwest Airlines

Case study | Joon

The next generation of low-cost

With chic style and a curated line-up of in-flight products, Joon was inspired by the money-conscious but quality-driven millennial. Célia Geslin will talk about why Joon is a vital part of the Air France brand and the process of creating an airline that goes beyond just flights and a fare to create a global travel experience.

Celia Geslin
Célia Geslin

Head of Product & Customer Experience , Joon





Session 4

Destination innovation – a spotlight on disruption


Beat them or join them? Adapting business models to disruption

  • Should airlines try to outpace disruption or embrace it?
  • What are the practicalities of incorporating disruptors into businesses?
  • Can effective innovation come from outside or must it become native?
  • How can airlines create a flexible business model to quickly adapt to emerging threats?

Dupsy Abiola
Dupsy Abiola

Head of Global Innovation , International Airlines Group


Faster than the speed of light: the aviation start-ups accelerating the industry

Fasten your seatbelts, make sure your seats are in the up-right position and ensure you’re ready to be launched into the stratosphere by these revolutionary start-ups. You will be treated to an in-flight entertainment experience as each company gives a five minute lightning-pitch and then takes questions from the floor.


Lightning pitch | Lumo

Lumo predicts flight delays weeks, days, and hours ahead of time, helping users proactively deal with flight disruption–a weather forecast for your trip. Lumo’s predictions assist corporations, airlines, travel management companies, online booking tools, and other travel entities in managing flight disruptions.

Bala Chandran
Bala Chandran

Chief Executive Officer , Lumo


Lightning pitch | Destygo

Answering customer queries in an average of 42 seconds, Destygo’s dedicated travel chatbots provide an immediate response – boosting relationships with customers and allowing your staff to optimise customer service.

Guillaume Laporte - Destygo
Guillaume Laporte

Chief Executive Officer , Destygo


Lightning pitch | Migacore

There’s an explosion of content that influences travel causing a shift in your customers behaviour. Migacore enables you to capture your customers’ intent before it materializes. Migacore leverages contextual data to derive travel intent and apply it across pricing, marketing and planning.

Abheer Kolkathar - Migacore
Abheer Kolkathar

Chief Executive Officer , Migacore


Lightning pitch | Jetlite

Jetlite offers a holistic and algorithm-based approach to increase the comfort of passengers over the whole passenger journey by mitigating jetlag through three key factors: chrono-biologically improved lighting for aircraft & airports, customised nutrition concepts and personalised app-based schedules.

Dr Achim Leder - Jetlite
Dr Achim Leder

Chief Executive Officer , Jetlite


Chair’s closing remarks and drinks reception

Brexit Breakfast


Britain, Brexit and beyond: understanding regulatory challenges

Join us at our Brexit breakfast where our expert will discuss the impacts of Brexit and the effects of regulation on the aviation industry as a whole.

  • How can European aviation continue to thrive beyond Brexit?
  • Has Brexit proved that equity ownership regulation is outdated?
  • Precarious waters: how Brexit has illuminated the industry’s reliance on regulation
  • What precautions can airlines take to defend against changing circumstances?


Chair's opening remarks

Session 5

The industry of tomorrow: winning the race to become digital

Keynote address

Soaring through the clouds: El Al’s thriving through digital transformation

Gonen Usishkin

President and Chief Executive Officer , El Al Israel Airlines

Panel discussion

Tackling transformation head on: winning the race to become digital

  • How must the aviation industry radically redefine itself through digital transformation?
  • In what areas must airlines and airports invest to be best prepared for the future?
  • Necessary measures: upgrading legacy systems to increase efficiency
  • Passenger data: what are the major benefits that better analytics could unlock?
  • What are the barriers to effective use of data and how can they be overcome?
  • How can technology be used to provide the best possible customer experience?
  • Creating customer-centric digital programmes: key strategies for success

Steven Greenway
Steven Greenway

President , Swoop

Neetan Chopra Emirates
Neetan Chopra

Senior Vice Presiden, IT Strategic Services , Emirates

David Girhammer
David Girhammar

Founder and Chief Executive Officer , Ernest Airlines

Gonen Usishkin

President and Chief Executive Officer , El Al Israel Airlines

Ravinder Pal Singh
Ravinder Pal Singh

Chief Information and Innovation Officer , Vistara

Case study | Swoop

Lessons from the carrier born in the digital age

In 2017, Westjet announced a new challenger would be swooping the Canadian ULCC market. Born 21 years after its parent, Swoop entered the market in the midst of the digital age. Steven Greenway will present the opportunities that new technology has to disrupt the market, and how older carriers can learn from their counterparts who were born in the digital age.

Steven Greenway
Steven Greenway

President , Swoop


New technologies, new opportunities: assessing the developmental state of play

  • What technologies offer the greatest potential to transform the aviation industry?
  • How will artificial intelligence, deep learning and RPA change operational functions?
  • Cloud technology: providing safety, scalability and keeping costs down
  • A common tongue? Unlocking the potential of language translation capabilities

Ravinder Pal Singh
Ravinder Pal Singh

Chief Information and Innovation Officer , Vistara


Advisory session

Fireside chat

Predicting impulse: using personalisation to push passengers to purchase

  • How can airlines maximise their ancillary revenues through personalisation?
  • Is there a risk that too much personalisation could limit further revenue?
  • Using personal and contextual data to select the correct ancillaries
  • With connectivity approaching, how can IFE be adapted to stay relevant?
  • Can airlines predict what duty free to promote?

Jouni Oksanen - Air Baltic
Jouni Oksanen

Senior Vice President, eCommerce, Sales and Marketing , Air Baltic

Chris Amenechi
Chris Amenechi

Vice President, Pricing and Revenue Management , Copa Airlines



Session 6

The point of departure – delighting customers


Airports innovating for the customer

  • What are the innovations taking place to improve customer experience today?
  • Which points of contact are most in need of revitalisation?
  • Is automation really what passengers want?
  • How can we maximise passenger time in airports?
  • How can the image of airports as a transitory space be changed?

Henk Gerzee
Henk Jan Gerzee

Chief Digital Officer , Royal Schipol Group

Fireside chat

Seamless passenger experience: co-operation between airlines and airports

  • How can airlines and airports work as a single unit to attract customers?
  • Should airlines be allowed to have greater inputs in terminals?
  • How does branding enhance and disrupt a passenger’s experience of an airport?
  • How can airports and airlines amalgamate their digital presence for the customer?

Joni Sundelin
Joni Sundelin

Executive Director - Helsinki Airport , Finavia

Karim Al-Soufi
Karim Al-Soufi

Vice President, Ground Customer Experience , Finnair


Advisory session

Case study | Narita International Airport

Leading the pack: leveraging the best of technology to operate intelligently

Consistently ranked as one of the world’s best airports, Tokyo’s Narita Airport has maintained its leading position due to the constant innovation. Harnessing the newest and most innovative technology – Narita has managed to keep operating costs down and customer satisfaction up. Futoshi Osada will explain how technology can be built into the architecture of airports so that change can be rapidly adopted and implemented.





Session 7

Preparing for take-off – the future of the industry


Designing the airport of the future

  • What will the airport of the future look like?
  • In what ways will airports need to reinvent themselves to succeed?
  • What services will be integral to an airport’s appeal?
  • How will changes in design revolutionise the customer experience?

Antoinette Nassopoulos-Erickson
Antoinette Nassopoulos-Erickson

Senior Partner and Architect , Foster + Partners


Foresights from the CMO: how demand will shape the industry

  • What major trends lie ahead for the aviation industry?
  • In what ways will passenger traffic change over the next 20 years?
  • Which type of plane will come to define the leaders in industry over the next decade?

Jan Hogrefe

Chief Economist, Commercial Airplanes , Boeing


Next-generation fleet: learning from the innovators

  • What are the most exciting innovations in aircraft design?
  • What lies in the future of the aircraft cabin?
  • How will sustainability initiatives impact how planes fly?


From blue skies to green: the sustainable evolution

  • How will sustainability shape the aviation industry of the future?
  • Are schemes like CORSIA enough or do airlines need to surpass regulation?
  • Biofuels: a feasible, long-term alternative?
  • What immediate steps can airlines take to sow the seeds for a sustainable future?

Philippe Lacamp

Senior Vice President, Americas , Cathay Pacific


How will the Fourth Industrial Revolution transform travel?

  • Will we recognise the travel industry that exists in twenty years?
  • Which areas will be most transformed by incoming technologies?
  • How must airlines prepare for the oncoming technological transformation?


Chair’s closing remarks, end of conference

Who attends


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Discussions from 2018

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Which technologies will redefine aviation?


All tickets include:

2 day conference pass, lunch & refreshments and a drinks reception

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Venue Details

Hilton Tower Bridge

Hilton Tower Bridge, Tooley Street, London

5 More London Place, Tooley Street, London SE1 2BY

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