RELX subsidary Cirium acquires travel tech start-up to transform airline forecasting

LONDON, UK, March 11, 2021: Cirium, the aviation analytics company, which is part of RELX, today announces the acquisition of Migacore, a travel technology start-up that has demonstrated how applying advanced machine learning (ML) techniques to online data sources can help airlines stay ahead of changes in passenger demand.

Migacore has worked with some of the world’s most advanced carriers, such as Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines, to translate data from online news, search, social media, events and exhibitions, into signals that can help predict real-world travel demand.

After a series of successful airline trials, the Migacore team and technology are joining Cirium, which will help to scale the capabilities. The Migacore team will not only gain access to Cirium’s data and resources, but also to the group’s commercial reach across global aviation.

Airline demand models have traditionally been built around comparing current booking activity against historic trends, with the ticket offers raised or lowered to ensure that a flight is filled at optimum fare levels. The search was already on to improve on this but has been accelerated by the unprecedented collapse of flying during the pandemic.

“The airline industry has been experimenting with new sources of demand data for some time, but the pandemic has now made this an absolute necessity. Past booking patterns today give virtually no guide to current demand.”

Kevin O’Toole, chief strategy officer at Cirium

“Migacore is not alone in looking for new demand signals, but it really stands out. Their airline partners were clearly impressed with how the team had taken time to understand and integrate with the highly automated workflow around Revenue Management. And we were impressed too,” said O’Toole.

“Integrating our forecasting capabilities into the Cirium portfolio will bring forward the new model that the market has needed for some time, allowing airlines to better forecast the intent to travel. Ultimately that means better matching between market demand and the airline offer, which should be good for travelers and carriers alike,” said Abheer Kolhatkar, chief executive officer and co-founder at Migacore. The plan is to scale the existing service under the Cirium brand and to make similar forecasting available to clients across air travel and into aerospace, aircraft finance and beyond.

About Cirium
Cirium brings together powerful data and analytics to keep the world moving. Delivering insight, built from decades of experience in the sector, enabling travel companies, aircraft manufacturers, airports, airlines and financial institutions, among others, to make logical and informed decisions which shape the future of travel, growing revenues and enhancing customer experiences. Cirium is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers.

About RELX
RELX is a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. The Group serves customers in more than 180 countries and has offices in about 40 countries. It employs over 33,000 people, of whom almost half are in North America. The shares of RELX PLC, the parent company, are traded on the London, Amsterdam and New York Stock Exchanges using the following ticker symbols: London: REL; Amsterdam: REN; New York: RELX. The market capitalisation is approximately £33.3bn, €39bn, $46.5bn.

About Migacore
Migacore is a tech start-up founded and built by machine learning experts, focusing on bringing predictive demand forecasting for airlines. Migacore was one of the first start-ups to join IAG’s Hangar 51 program, is an alumni of Accelerate@IATA— a program led by IATA and Silicon Valley’s platform Plug and Play—and was one of the first start-ups to graduate from Singapore Airline’s KrisLab scheme. Migacore’s innovation has been featured heavily at key industry events including ATPCO’s Elevate events 2019 and 2018Applied Machine Learning Days (AMLD) 2020Entrepreneur First 2017 and NDR – The Artificial Intelligence Conference 2018, and was named as Plug and Play’s 11 start-ups to watch for 2020.