Max Supply --- 24,976,439 LIF
🏗️ Platform ------- Ethereum
Winding Tree is a blockchain-based distribution platform for the travel industry. Today the travel industry is highly concentrated on the distribution front due to core inefficiencies of the internet. The need of a trusted party on the internet allowed intermediaries to concentrate the sector and raise the barrier of entry for new startups. In travel, consumer facing intermediaries often source their inventory from other B2B intermediaries causing double marginalization and inflating the prices.
Winding Tree is public and permissionless, allowing anyone to source inventory from the platform. Today distribution fees are arbitrarily set by the concentrated intermediaries, Winding Tree gives everyone access to the inventory directly at the source enabling permissionless innovation and allows the free market to determine distribution costs.
The fuel of our platform is the Líf token. Líf is an ERC20 compatible token with added functionality required by travel companies to send the necessary information within transactions. Líf tokens will have three additional methods, compared to the basic ERC20 token, through which the token holder is be able to send value, data, and/or execute a function on those transfers. This brings extra value and use cases to the token, allowing companies to design more complex and tailored applications on our platform.
Beyond the technological advantages of Líf it also has the benefits of other cryptocurrencies such as reduced transaction costs and, particularly important for the travel industry, cheaper international payments. A simple travel booking today can go through multiple FXs. With Líf every party is able to only FX what they need without bearing other parties FX costs.
Settlement is also a significant cost for the travel industry today, Líf tokens can be programmed to automatically settle costs. Government departments, airports, staffing agencies and suppliers have a high incentive for settlements to be automated while ensuring on-time payments, low cost of verification, and cutting the currently high costs of settlement.
The travel industry is dominated by a handful of companies which, through market power and industry politics, have created a highly–concentrated market. They are able to charge superior margins, cause double marginalization, and, in some cases, simply collect rent. Rent–collection and superior margins inflate the cost of supply, with consumers ultimately bearing the artificially increased costs.
The consolidated nature of the travel distribution platforms creates a situation where the intermediaries have no incentive to use new technologies. Instead, they spend resources on locking their customers into using systems that were in some cases created decades ago.
Current archaic technological solutions hinder innovation and create extremely high barriers to entry for new platforms. Blockchain technology allows for a ground layer to be built for a truly free and competitive market in travel distribution.
Five companies in the travel industry control the most of the travel market. The two largest OTAs (Online Travel Agencies), Priceline Group (operating income 2018: 5.34B) and Expedia Inc. (net income 2018: 406M) , control 95% of OTA market in the U.S. Amadeus, Sabre, and Travelport, the top three GDSs (Global Distribution Systems), have 99% combined market share in non-direct inventory in the air market.
The concentrated structure of travel distribution has also been one of the factors allowing these companies to make record-breaking revenues, with Priceline Group enjoying a decade of year-over-year 40% EBITA growth.
These dominant players lack the economic incentive to innovate because there are only two major intermediaries in the hotel sector and three in the airline sector. Some of these companies still use dated mainframe computers and software written decades ago.
Suppliers Deliver your inventory to sellers with new open-source and commission-free channel
Sellers An open-source technology that gives sellers commission-free access to thousands of hotels, airlines, cruises and other travel services worldwide.
Software-vendors Make your product utilize Winding Tree Platform features and increase its value for users
Startups-and-Developers Make the future of travel together Developers, startups, evangelists and geeks are welcome!