AID – Add Intelligence to Data – has been selected in the “mobility” category of the second DataCity open innovation programme, organised by the City of Paris and NUMA start-up accelerator. Within this programme, it developed, in partnership with SFR, MasterCard and SUEZ, an application aiming at analysing tourist flows in cities. Deputy Managing Director of AID – Add Intelligence to Data, Stéphane Boucharenc, looks back at the key moments in the design of this new service, intended for actors of the tourism sector.
Could you introduce yourself and tell us about your company’s activity?
Stéphane Boucharenc: I am the Deputy Managing Director and Director of Data Strategy/Data Marketing of AID (Add Intelligence to Data). AID is a data agency with three main activities: one activity related to CRM and marketing database management, another related to data science, data mining and text mining, and a third activity related to Big Data, and customer paths in particular.
Which challenges did you take up within the DataCity programme?
S.B: Within this programme, in which a number of partners have provided support and data to start-ups, we were competing in the challenge entitled “Tracking and understanding tourist flows”. This challenge aimed at offering a solution to monitor and analyse data related to tourist flows and consumption in order to better understand tourist activity as well as its evolution, and to adapt the offer accordingly.
We won the challenge ahead of some fifty other start-ups and we have collaborated with SFR, MasterCard, the City of Paris and SUEZ. The challenge aims at answering the needs of the economic players in tourism that do not have access to Big Data and do not have sufficiently precise data, at their neighbourhood level, to monitor variations in tourist activity in detail. According to the type of data which is studied, it will be possible to, amongst others, precisely modulate the city’s service activities, improve the accommodation and transport offer, or to measure the performance of communications operations.
How did you collaborate with SUEZ?
S.B: Thanks to their knowledge of local authorities, and of a number of services that impact tourism, the staff at SUEZ was able to support us throughout the challenge. This collaboration enabled us to precisely define the needs of the service and to improve both the business model and the ergonomics of the application. When we were looking into the construction of the computerised tool in the pre-project phase, the teams from SUEZ helped in the understanding of complex data, while precisely targeting the added value of the future application.
What are the results of this challenge?
S.B: Everyone who took part in the challenge feels proud to have contributed to this collaborative effort. The unique thing about this challenge is that very different companies collaborate under the auspices of NUMA, and with the support of the City of Paris.
The first achievement of this challenge was this spirit of collaboration and sharing that reflects the developments in the modern economy. In just two months, we developed an operational application offering some very interesting insights that were not previously available to all actors of the tourist business. The business model is currently under construction, so that the application can be made available to professional actors of the tourist industry.