The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), in association with Globalia, the leading tourism group in Spain and Latin America, have rejoined to launch, for the second consecutive year, the OMT Tourism Startup Competition (2nd UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition).
After the success of the first edition, in which nearly 3000 companies participated, the largest competition for startups – or emerging companies – returns worldwide, dedicated to identifying the new companies that will lead the transformation of the sector
The new call was launched within the framework of the 23rd meeting of the UNWTO General Assembly (September 10-13, St. Petersburg). The presentation was attended by the UNWTO Secretary General, Zurab Pololikashvili, and the CEO of Globalia, Javier Hidalgo.
The eye is on innovation
“With this competition we are exploring new terrain in tourism, innovation, entrepreneurship and sustainable development. We have managed to bring together the most relevant parties that mark the development of our sector and its relevance on a global scale”, said Zurab Pololikashvili.
For his part, Hidalgo emphasized the collaborative effort of this second edition, with partners of such relevance as Telefónica, Amadeus, Intu or Valencia Digital District.
“Wakalua will help us achieve a bright, sustainable and profitable future. It will also help us promote a circular economy, as well as promote social development. In Globalia we are aware that the tourism of the future will not be the same as yesterday’s tourism; It needs to be better for our planet, our children and for the environment. This competition will help us achieve these challenges through technology and innovation”, said the CEO of Globalia.
The new partners will be actively involved in the promotion of the five categories of the project and will help to choose the best solutions and the most disruptive projects based on new business models.
How does the competition work?
This annual competition is one of the great projects of Wakalua, the tourism innovation hub of Globalia, which will host the winning companies for further development, and will help them interact with leading companies in the sector. UNWTO and Globalia have the support of the innovation consultancy Barrabés.biz for this project.
In the first call, 20 startups from 12 countries reached the semifinals and finals held in Budapest and Madrid, respectively. The Refundit tax return company was the winner and Globalia, as a funding partner, also invested in Freebird together with Portugal Ventures, established a joint venture with Tripscience and launched a pilot with Pruvo.
The call for the 2nd UNWTO Tourism Startup Competition will be launched worldwide and will end on November 15. The winners will be announced on January 21, 2020 during a gala to be held within the framework of the International Tourism Fair of Madrid (Fitur).
Also published on Medium.