Τελευταία νέα
HomeRegional NewsCentral & South AmericaGlobal Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre is selected for $250K of the Airbnb Community Fund for projects in the Caribbean

Global Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre is selected for $250K of the Airbnb Community Fund for projects in the Caribbean

FREED GROUP announces addition of Connexus Travel, Hong Kong’s first registered travel agent, to the FREED GROUP family *** Leveraging advanced technology and digital travel applications alongside long-standing travel services expertise to provide the best travel support for corporate travellers (31 January 2023, Hong Kong) – FREED GROUP (“FREED”), an award-winning digital and smart merchandising solutions company, has announced that its Co-founder & CEO, Mr. Abel Zhao, has acquired Connexus Travel Limited (“Connexus Travel”, formerly Swire Travel), a leading regional travel management company headquartered in Hong Kong. After the acquisition, Connexus will now become part of the FREED GROUP family. As a technology pioneer in the digital commerce sector, FREED believes that Connexus Travel has an excellent competitive edge in the industry given its considerable standing and dedicated team. Leveraging FREED’s DNA in the travel industry, the acquisition is set to create technological & strategic synergies that will further enhance Connexus’ overall capabilities and drive long-term business growth. Since its inception in 2015, FREED has been connecting platforms, brands, and service providers to their customers with enhanced digital capabilities through its proprietary SAAS solutions, as well as services like end-to-end artificial intelligence digital transformation, smart merchandising & smart marketing. FREED has over 250 dedicated professionals, from 22 different regions around the world including Greater China, South Korea, Canada, Sweden, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, Nepal, the United Kingdom, Uzbekistan, and the United States of America, who combine their extensive experience and expertise in technology, tourism, commerce, hospitality, and other industries to operate in 10+ markets worldwide, serving 200+ high-profile clients and partners such as Samsung, China Mobile, China Life Insurance, City of Seoul (Smart City), The Private Office Of Sheikh Saeed bin Ahmed Al Maktoum, Google, FIFA World Cup, Match Hospitality, BMW and Hyundai Card. Meanwhile, Connexus Travel Limited, established in 1948, was the first travel agent registered in Hong Kong and now operates in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai, specializing in corporate, leisure and MICE travel, offering a full range of travel services and digital booking applications to support seamless journeys. Mr. Abel Zhao, Co-founder & CEO of FREED GROUP, said, “We are very pleased with having Connexus Travel in our FREED family, as Connexus Travel is a name trusted by corporate, leisure and MICE travellers. We see tremendous growth potential for Connexus because of its long history of excellent services and the synergies that will be generated between Connexus and FREED. The positive outcomes we envisage include business opportunities spanning travel services, e-commerce, marketing services and brand loyalty programs, all of which will be underpinned by a comprehensive range of digitalized services and solutions. Ultimately, we anticipate Connexus Travel to follow in the footsteps of FREED GROUP and transform into a global brand.” FREED GROUP Announces Addition of Connexus Travel, Hong Kong’s first registered travel agent, to the FREED GROUP family 31 January 2023 2/2 Mr. Eric Lau, General Manager of Connexus Travel, said, “Connexus has been committed to providing quality services to customers for the past 70 years. This acquisition will accelerate the digital transformation of our products through new signature customer-facing travel applications, which will include the provision of new user experiences and efficiencies for our corporate travellers. At the same time, we will leverage our position as a market leader and the development plans with FREED to expand our services not only in Hong Kong and China, but also to the markets where FREED currently operates. We look forward to embarking on a new chapter of development with the support of FREED GROUP.” FREED GROUP’s technology and services have been recognized globally in recent years, including the 2022 Technology Pioneer by World Economic Forum, the 2021 Deloitte Technology Rising Star, Grand winner of the 2021 United Nations UNWTO Global Start-up Competition and the 2018 APAC ICT Grand Award, among many others. In June 2022, FreeD Group raised USD$15 million in a new funding round led by Daiwa ACA APAC Growth Fund and ACA Partners Pte. Ltd..

The Global Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre is one of two Caribbean entities selected to be part of the Airbnb Community Fund, which donated more than USD$2 million to sustainability programs in Latin America. The GTRCMC project will benefit Jamaica, Barbados and Grenada.

KINGSTON, JAMAICA – When Hosts on Airbnb open their doors to travelers from around the world, they welcome their guests into their communities, too. As part of our commitment to share Airbnb’s success with our stakeholders, we want to give back to the neighborhoods and towns our Hosts call home, on this occasion with the Global Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC) for a project that will benefit Jamaica, Barbados and Grenada.

The platform announced the recipients of the 2022 Airbnb Community Fund grant. In 2022, the program focused primarily on sustainability, with more than USD$6 million in grants awarded to more than 20 organizations working to protect our planet and promote sustainability and environmental conservation, in 19 countries on six continents, including Latin America. The Global Tourism Resilience Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC) will receive USD$250,000.

“We are delighted to add tourism resilience as an important component of sustainability through our work in the Caribbean, we are confident that the donations will support local communities in preserving the countries’ natural and cultural heritage for future generations,” saidsaid Carlos Muñoz, Airbnb’s Director of Public Policy and Communications for Central America and the Caribbean.

“The Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC) is honored to receive this timely grant as we undertake our vital research project that will help raise awareness among Caribbean Micro, Small and Medium Sized Tourism Entrepreneurs (MSMEs) about the importance of climate-responsible practices in their operations, as well as encouraging them to take urgent action to combat climate change. We are excited to partner with Airbnb whose climate action corporate sustainability framework (which is committed to making Airbnb a Net Zero company by 2030), is in sync with one of the GTRCMC’s mandates; that is, building tourism resilience capacities for climate action and for global sustainability.” said Professor Lloyd Waller, Executive Director, Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre (HQ).

In addition to protecting local biodiversity and wildlife, the 2022 Airbnb Community Fund is also focused on promoting climate resilience efforts in the Caribbean through supporting GTRCMC in Jamaica and the EcoExploratorio in Puerto Rico. Both organizations focus on climate change adaptation and tourism resilience to reduce the impact of hurricanes in the region.

The platform indicated the Caribbean region with Jamaica and Puerto Rico; Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica, Colombia and Chile will receive more than US$2 million in donations awarded to more than six different organizations. As in 2021, this year the Host Advisory Council provided important information for this process.

Today, we are excited to announce the 2022 Airbnb Community Fund grant recipients. As in 2021, our Host Advisory Board provided important feedback to inform this process.

The 2022 grant recipients include the following organizations in the Latin American region:

  • Global Tourism Resilience & Crisis Management Center (GTRCMC) in the Caribbean
  • EcoExploratorio Hurricane education in Puerto Rico
  • World Wildlife Fund Coral Reef Restoration Project in Brazil
  • World Wildlife Fund Community Tourism projects in the Andean-coastal foothills of Nariño in Colombia
  • World Wildlife Fund Climate Change and Xochimilco Wetland Restoration in Mexico
  • World Wildlife Fund Project to Protect the Jaguar and Marine Sea Turtles in Costa Rica
  • World Wildlife Fund Climate Change and Cities + Green in Chile

“As a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, EcoExploratorio relies on generous donations from individuals and corporate donors, in-kind donations and volunteers to help us provide exhibits and programming that spark imagination in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Thanks to the support of friends like Airbnb, EcoExploratorio has become a leader in Puerto Rico as an informal STEM Education center, funded by philanthropic partners since 2014, impacting thousands of students, teachers and the general public annually from our current space at Plaza Las Americas,” said Ada Monzón, founder and president of the Board of Directors EcoExploratorio, Inc. Museo de Ciencias de Puerto Rico.

During 2021, the Community Fund’s inaugural year, Airbnb distributed grants to more than 150 organizations focused on COVID-19 relief, economic empowerment, and education as they worked to meet the unprecedented needs brought about by the pandemic. Many of these organizations have since shared how the funding impacted their communities over the last year.

Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website | + Posts

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.