Our People

Michael Smith, Managing Partner

In his current role, Michael designs and develops the agendas for Ai’s market leading events.   From loyalty, ancillary merchandising to payments and fraud Ai, via its events, helps delegates connect not only with their peers but also market leading content and insights.   He’s also a co-founder of the Loyalty Fraud Prevention Association and has been actively moderating Loyalty Fraud Prevention sessions for the last few years.

Prior to Ai Events, Michael was a board Director of British Airways Global Financial Services Limited. This included responsibility for developing mileage sales with partners such as American Express, Avis Car Rental and bringing onboard all the brands within InterContinental Hotels and Resorts portfolio.  Early on in this role, Michael recognized that real value could be delivered by BA (and other airlines) by understanding what customers were actually buying. It was more than just an airline seat, many of them wanted a “one stop” shop for the products ancillary to the flight. As a result, BA developed in-depth relationships with many of its Executive Club partners that delivered more benefits to passengers than just miles. It also delivered an additional multi-million pound revenue stream to BA on the back of these ancillary sales.

He is based in Glasgow, Scotland where he graduated with an MBA from the University of Strathclyde as well as having professional qualifications in Marketing UK’s Chartered Institute
of Marketing.

 

 

 

 

 

Christopher Staab, Managing Partner

Over the years Chris has gained a masterful reputation for developing and organizing  conferences, training and events. He currently heads business development at Ai Events.

Chris began his career in the airline industry as a Tariff Analyst at ATPCO in Washington D.C. and later worked as an Aviation Analyst at the U.S. Department of Transportation and as Manager of Revenue Management at Amtrak.

Prior to co-founding Airline Information, Chris worked as a Business Development Manager at IATA in both Miami and Geneva, Switzerland. At IATA, he working in marketing, including organizing dozens of airline conferences around the globe. Chris holds degrees in Business Administration, History and Latin American Studies from the University of Pittsburgh. He speaks fluent Spanish and is a certified Meeting Planner.
 

 

 

 

Angella Esposito, Events Manager

Angella is a Senior Events & Marketing manager with over 10 years of experience in developing and implementing international events and conferences through innovative thinking.  Prior to joining Ai Events, she worked as an Event Manager at Accelya in Barcelona, Spain for 7 years, where she gained a deep knowledge of the airline and payment industries.

She began her career working in Advertising and Media in her hometown of Lima, Peru. After 10 years of working in Barcelona she went back to Peru in 2015. In June 2019 she returned to Spain and now she is based in Madrid. She holds a degree from the University of Lima in Communications. Angella is native Spanish speaker and is fluent in English and French.

 

 

Editorials

  • Executive Profile: caravelo’s CEO Iñaki Uriz Millan on headless air commerce +

    22nd October, 2019 Why should travel e-commerce players opt for a headless commerce architecture? Because it enables companies to conduct commerce in any digital touchpoint with no integration required.   Read More
  • Ai Video: Selling air ancillaries via interactive email +

    17th October, 2019 Amidst all the talk around simplifying travel, there are times when even simple aspects like checking-in or selecting a seat can be a tedious task or even Read More
  • Ai Editorial: Can infrequent travellers turn out to be the most loyal segment? +

    11th October, 2019 A recent podcast on loyalty, featuring Joanne Ward, David Canty, David Feldman, Alan Lias and Iain Pringle, discussed the significance of less frequent flyers, and how can Read More
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