Growth Matters: GeckoGo takes you places you've never been
Feb 26th 2009 2:30PM
Updated Mar 24th 2010 12:59PM
With all the gloom in the global economy, I got to wondering whether there is anything else going on in the world of business. I'm looking for growth because I think that's what will ultimately bring the economy out of the doldrums. Not surprisingly, that growth is coming from technology companies. In Growth Matters, I look at consumer technology companies that point the way to growth trends -- and in the process introduce services and products you may want to explore.
If you're an independent traveler who likes to go to out of the way places, you don't have to plan your trip alone. That's because thanks to GeckoGo, you can benefit from the wisdom and experiences of others who have been there before. As its co-founder, Pokin Yueng, explained to me, "GeckoGo's goal is to ensure that when travelers plan their trip, they know that they are making the best decisions on where to go, when to go, and what to do there."
GeckoGo sees itself as a leader. According to Yueng, "We are currently the fastest growing source of unique travel content online, and to date, compared to our competitors, we've been the most capital efficient. We target independent travelers (roughly 40% of the total leisure travel market) -- those travelers interested in experiencing a country, its natural surroundings, its people, its cultural heritage (basically anyone not interested in an all-inclusive vacation package)."
Yueng believes that "This group of travelers has been traditionally underserved since the travel industry has presumed that independent travelers spend less (whereas in fact they travel longer and spend more -- $2,700 versus $870 for other travelers), and also because travel agents find it easier to sell vacation packages like cruises than complex, unique itineraries."
GeckoGo plans to obtain revenues from the leads that it generates for sites where consumers book travel. According to Yueng, "Eventually we would like to get paid for lead generation. Booking travel is the monetization point in this business. If you can position yourself as a good planning site -- getting users ready to book travel, capturing the audience, and giving them the information they need -- then you could take a transaction fee."
Have you used GeckoGo? What do you think?
Peter Cohan is president of Peter S. Cohan & Associates. He also teaches management at Babson College. His eighth book is You Can't Order Change: Lessons from Jim McNerney's Turnaround at Boeing. He has no financial interest in the securities mentioned.