Travelstart acquires Hong Kong’s Satisfly to boost its social intelligence chops


Cape Town-headquartered online flight booking company Travelstart has acquired Satisfly, a Hong Kong-based social intelligence company.

Founded in 2008, Satisfly uses big data and social media insights to help travel companies better understand and interact with their customers. Its co-founder Sergio Mello will be joining the Travelstart team as Head of Innovation, while remaining CEO of Satisfly.

According to Travelstart, the acquisition will empower it to “create more meaningful experiences for their customers through social media data”. This, it says, will aid it in its expansion into Africa and the Middle East.

Although Travelstart has acquired the company outright, the Satisfly brand will be retained and Satisfly management will remain independent.

The deal will see new functionality added to the Travelstart site. It will, for instance, now have social logins (run through Satisfly), which it says will allow it to gain “valuable insights into the way customers interact with the site across various channels, as well as be more relevant with client-facing deals”. In addition, Satisfly is currently rolling out mobile apps for the company.

Read more: Online travel agency Travelstart shares its growth strategy in new markets

“Satisfly’s technology will allow us to make sense of our immense social data,” says Travelstart Founder Stephan Ekbergh . “Going forward, we will know where our customers normally want to go even before they ask, giving us the ability to cut through the clutter and provide them with personalised offers.”

According to Mello, the acquisition will help both companies to increase their output when it comes to innovation.

“The acquisition is important as it allows Travelstart to capitalize on the data part of social media in addition to the direct marketing part of it,” he said. “Travelstart will have access to Satisfly’s technology to create relevant experiences for their customers.”



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