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This article was published on January 14, 2009


    Tripsay adds experience to its board with former Travelocity VP Alfonso Castellano

    Tripsay adds experience to its board with former Travelocity VP Alfonso Castellano
    Ernst-Jan Pfauth
    Story by

    Ernst-Jan Pfauth

    Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He a Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He also served as The Next Web’s blog’s first blogger and Editor in Chief, back in 2008. At De Correspondent, Ernst-Jan serves as publisher, fostering the expansion of the platform.

    Tripsay, the Finnish start-up who provides passionate travelers with recommendations, has added over 25 years of travel experience to its staff by welcoming former Travelocity Vice President Alfonso Castellano to the board.

    TripSayCastellano worked at LastMinunte.com for nine years, serving the company as the Managing Director of Southern Europe, head of Latin American expansion and Global Hotel contracting and procurement. Following Travelocity’s billion-dollar acquisition of LastMinute.com, Castellano was appointed Travelocity’s Senior Vice President of consumer business in Europe.

    According to his LinkedIn profile, Castellano also works as a Managing Director at InnovaTravel and MindProject. InnvaTravel supports travel start-ups from definition and strategy to funding and operations. MindProject helps travel companies to get their marketing right.

    What makes TripSay unique?

    Tripsay received a positive response from the tech scene when it launched in August. When I met co-founder Leo Koivulehto at a Finnish meet-up in San Francisco in May 2008, he explained me how Tripsay will differentiate itself from the dozens of other travel services.

    TripSay founders Juha Huttunen and Leo Koivulehto

    TripSay founders Juha Huttunen and Leo Koivulehto. (CC) Elliott Ng,
    UpTake Travel Search.

    Koivulehto said: “Our service is unique as the information you see is personalized according to your interests and profile. The more time you spend on the site and more places you rate, the more it learns from you. A college graduate and grandpa Jones will see differently biased content and recommendations. Which means you don’t have to spend time going through things that are of no interest to you. We help to find what you are really looking for.”

    Now that the service has found an user base, it’s time to monetize. That’s probably why the Finnish travel service attracted a man who exactly knows how to make some money out of a travel site.