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GREEK ENTREPRENEUR

Airfasttickets.com, a Greek company shows the right way

Airfasttickets.com, a Greek company shows the right way
Airfasttickets team at ITB surrounding CEO Nikolaos Koklonis / Photo: L. Citrinot

By Luc Citrinot, eTN | Mar 17, 2012

BERLIN, Germany (eTN) - Launched six years ago with a capital of a few 100,000 euro, global online travel agency, Airfasttickets, is turning into a global player under the leadership of his owner. Airfasttickets' development looks almost like a fairy tale. Based originally in Piraeus near Athens, the company is the brainchild of young Greek entrepreneur, Nikolaos Koklonis, only 28 years old but full of big ambitions.

In just 6 years, airfasttickets has grown to represent a capital investment of €10 million compared to €200,000 when it was created. Airfasttickets also demonstrates that very dynamic companies still do exist and prosper in Greece even in harsh economic times. “We want to operate all across the world, starting first with Europe. We are now in Berlin, London, and Paris and are soon to open an office in Italy, either in Milan or Rome. And we also [are] start[ing] to look at Istanbul, as the market is growing tremendously,” explained Nikolaos Koklonis. The London office will take care of the entire UK market and Ireland. The representative office will offer sales and support for all Airfasttickets products, as well as controling the surrounding markets.

“After we [have] reinforced our presence in Europe, we will then focus at expansion in Asia, as we know that middle class is booming with travels becoming increasingly part of the living standard. We already had our first contacts in Hong Kong, but we look also for opportunities in countries such as Indonesia, Malaysia, or Thailand”, explained the young entrepreneur at a press dinner during Berlin ITB. The company wants to expand where demand is turning strong for regional and long-haul traffic. BRIC countries and other emerging economies such as Turkey, Indonesia, or the Gulf region will then be of particular focus.

Airfasttickets’ business principle is simple. “We buy contingents of tickets to scheduled carriers at a discount, which help[s] us to resell then at a sharply-discounted fare, representing up to 30 percent of the cheapest fares on a normal carrier,” added Mr. Koklonis. The site is dedicated to B2C business, but Nikolaos Koklonis is now keen to expand its model. A new platform is currently under development, which will complement Airfasttickets operation for individual travelers. “We are now also looking at another dedicated service for premium travelers with discounting tickets available in business and first class,” added the Airfasttickets President.

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