|JetBlue data-themed plane. Photo: JetBlue
[Avionics Today 02-11-2016] JetBlue is launching a Technology Ventures unit, a wholly owned subsidiary that will invest in, incubate and partner with early stage startups at the intersection of technology, travel and hospitality. As the first corporate venture capital subsidiary in Silicon Valley backed by a U.S. airline, JetBlue Technology Ventures will operate from the GSVlabs campus in the heart of Silicon Valley.
By partnering with incubators, venture capital firms, universities and other organizations inside and outside Silicon Valley, JetBlue Technology Ventures will aim to build relationships with a range of startups across the travel and hospitality spectrum. The initiative will serve as a launch pad for innovations that improve customer and crewmember experiences, increase the airline’s operational efficiency and expand the JetBlue brand to new markets.
Bonny Simi will serve as president of the subsidiary, reporting to Eash Sundaram, executive vice president and chief information officer of JetBlue. As head of the JetBlue Technology Ventures oversight/advisory committee, Sundaram will lead and shape the strategic direction of the subsidiary, and will also facilitate integration of successful startup programs into JetBlue’s overall corporate innovation and technology initiatives.