2018 North West Enterprise Awards

28 SME NEWS / NorthWest Enterprise Awards 2018 MAG Joins Plug and Play As Its First Airport Anchor Partner MAG (Manchester Airports Group), the largest airport group in the UK, announced today its partnership with Plug and Play, a leading start up accelerator and corporate innovation platform based out of Silicon Valley. MAG is the UK’s leading airport group and owns and operates Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands Airports, together with a significant property business. MAG employs over 5,000 people and annually serves over 59 million passengers. Its new partner Plug and Play is a global innovation platform. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, we have built accelerator programs, corporate innovation services, and an in-house VC to make technological advancement progress faster than ever before. With over 25 locations around the world, 280 official corporate partners, 200 leading Silicon Valley VCs and over 250+ investments made in 2017, Plug and Play created the ultimate startup ecosystem across 14 different industries including Travel & Hospitality. This collaboration will give MAG influence over new innovations in the travel industry, so they can leverage these technologies to improve the end-to-end travel experience. It will also mean that other members of the accelerator benefits from the insight of one of the most forward-thinking airport operators in the world. As well as operating three major airports in the UK, at Manchester, London Stansted and East Midlands, MAG operates MAG- USA, an airport services business operating airport lounges and parking solutions across the United States. MAG has, over recent years, led the UK market in developing new technology solutions to support a successful airport car parking business, with hundreds of thousands of pre-booked prices in the market at any one time. Last year, it went further, establishing its own, in-house technology and e-commerce business – MAG-O – to respond to technology-driven changes in the way passengers travel and to move the entire airport experience into a new digital era. Andrew Harrison, MAG’s CEO, Airport Services said: “We have developed a successful airport e-commerce business in the UK, and a rapidly growing US business too. As we continually look for new and innovative ways to develop our business, becoming Plug and Play’s first airport Anchor Partner is the perfect way for us to find fresh new ideas, whilst supporting innovation and entrepreneurialism across the travel sector.” As Plug and Play’s first airport Anchor Partner, MAG has the opportunity to influence the technology focus areas of upcoming travel accelerator programs. MAG joins Plug and Play’s Travel & Hospitality program alongside 21 other partners including Changi Airport Group, Pittsburgh International Airport, and Gatwick International Airport. “We are thrilled to onboard MAG as our first airport Anchor Partner. MAG already has a head start on most airports as it relates to digital transformation. Our goal is to be an additional catalyst in MAG’s future innovation roadmap and ultimately enhance the traveler’s journey through their ecosystem,” Amir Amidi, Managing Partner, Plug and Play. Since their launch in 2016, Plug and Play Travel & Hospitality has accelerated over 110 startups. Their mission is to discover, support, and scale disruptive technologies that are defining the future of travel and hospitality. MAG will provide insight into innovating another step along the traveler’s journey, modernizing airports and enhancing the flow for passengers. ,

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