AMENITIES ISSUE 8 (Autumn 2018)

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AUTUMN 2018 | ISSUE 08

Original + Personal You can have both – that’s the #SpiritOfSPIRIANT

Every amenity kit we produce is designed to take your brand to another level, such as our beautifully-crafted ‘Artisanal Grace’ kit. Whether turning the latest luxury trends into affordable solutions or understanding how to ensure a lasting connection with passengers, we balance performance with inspiration so that you needn’t compromise. That’s the Spirit of SPIRIANT.

From The Editor

From the Editor

With the festive season upon us, I’d firstly like to wish you all a happy holiday and a fortuitous new year! If it’s anything like 2018, the amenity industry is set to raise the bar another year over! With the entry deadline for TravelPlus Awards of 2018 in early December, Christmas has come early in the office and St Nicolas has delivered some gorgeous goodies ready to be unwrapped and processed for judging early next year. As proud hosts of the awards, we’re excited to see what our focus groups have to say! Following on from our Summer Issue, which was inspired by what we saw at WTCE Hamburg, this issue takes the lead from the most recent industry expos at AIX/APEX/IFSA Boston and FTE Singapore, where the industry has continued to thrive however there are certain cracks that are starting to show. In this issue, we challenge the industry to tackle the big questions on Tech, Bedding, First Class Kits and Ethical Workforce Sustainability. Tech dominates our everyday lives and recently amenity kits have incorporated basic tech elements, particularly in the children’s sector, however is there any space to advance this technology past this initial stage, in a world driven by budgets, and creating kits for the lowest price? Bedding brands have taken the industry by storm, however, when you take away the face value of these brands, how are bedding offerings truly aiding passengers sleep onboard? First class ticket sales are in decline, and first class cabins reduced as a result; is the extinction of the iconic first class kit upon us? And lastly, how does implementing more ethical practices in the work place lead to a more sustainable future in the amenity industry, with special mention to Matrix’s head of compliance, Steve Wickham, stepping forward for the people behind the product!

Editor in Chief Debra Bradbury-Ward

As you may have gathered, it’s an issue crammed with questions of the future and if that wasn’t enough, we have supplier Kaelis in the Spotlight, and news celebrating the industry’s most recent partnerships. It sounds to me like you all deserve a much-needed break, so put your feet up and relax with your favourite tipple and this season’s Amenities Magazine.

Editor in Chief


Publisher Simon Ward

Features Editor Hayley Hartland

Features Editor Lily-Fleur Bradbury

Designer Alison Cutler

Published by TravelPlus, Red Kite Studio, Littleworth Road, Burnham, Buckinghamshire SL1 8PQ.

Editorial: / Advertising: AMENITIES MAGAZINE



In this issue... AN ALL DUTCH AFFAIR!


KLM go Double Dutch, partnering with dutch brand Rituals, to compliment their onboard amenity kits offering designed by dutch clothes designer, Jan Taminau.


WHAT’S NEW! Kaelis Keeps it cool with New Kids Kits for Air Astana Working closely with the Kaelis design team, Air Astana has created a new range of kids kits sure to capture the imaginations of their littlest globetrotters. Every concept comes with a specific character including the Superchef, the Smashing Superhero, the Voluntary Vet, the Amazing Architect, the Dangerous Detective and, lastly, the Extreme Explorer.


Is the Extinction of the iconic First Class Kit upon us?



Winning the race with a world first, Rossiya Airlines has become the first airline to incorporate Augmented Reality Technology into their children’s kits offered onboard to their littlest brand ambassadors



In a world driven by budgets, is there any space to advance technology in amenity kits past the initial stages?



Steve Wickham, Head of Compliance at Matrix, tells all when it comes to the needs of the workers who put the ‘work’ in workforce.



Amenities Magazine caught up with Kaelis CEO Frederico Heitz to hear his thoughts about the exciting onboard amenity market.

IN BED WITH THE BRANDS! Bedding Brands are in full bloom onboard, however, when you take away the face value of the brand, what are you really left with?


AMENITIES Newsletter & Magazine For more information on those featured in our “What’s New” section and to keep up to date on a regular basis, visit our website! Check it out at

Copyright © Avenel Investments. All right reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission is strictly prohibited. The title Amenities is published three times a year and is a trading division of Avenel Investments. While every effort has been made to ensure that the information is correct, neither the author nor publisher can be held responsible for inadvertent inaccuracies or omissions. The views of the writers in Amenities Magazine are not necessarily share by the publisher.



For 40 years, WESSCO has specialized in supplying a wide range of products for our airline customers worldwide. From amenities, to passenger comfort, to food & beverage service ware, we design and deliver the items you need to provide an exceptional experience for your passengers. We would love to see you at WTCE in Hamburg. Please email to arrange a meeting.

+1 (310) 477-4272

What's New

Kaelis designs Air Europa’s new Business Kits with Unicskin - Air Europa’s new Business Class kits, supplied by Kaelis, are classic in style with two interior pockets that help you to have your personal belongings well-organized. Gifted with a set of cosmetics from Unicskin, a fresh and innovative luxury brand offering truly effective unisex dermocosmetic solutions for all skin types, passengers are sure to feel refreshed after their travels.

Buzz Products partners Air New Zealand with Allbirds for their new Bird Mask - Air New Zealand and innovative footwear brand Allbirds have joined forces, with the help of Buzz Products, to take the best of New Zealand around the globe, bringing added comfort to the inflight experience with an intelligently designed eye mask to help customers sleep better and wake up fresh. Dubbed ‘the Bird Mask’ due to its birdlike features, Allbirds has transformed the humble airline eye mask into a luxurious and sustainable travel companion designed to be used again and again. Albea supplies Air France’s New Comfort Kits who are Over the Moon with Joon - Air France, launch their new comfort kit offering travelers an exclusive kit with Joon cosmetics. Customers will have the pleasure of using a hydrating ice gel in addition to the products available in self-service onboard.



Buzz partners BYREDO skincare with Emirates - Emirates has refreshed its premium offering with new luxury products in First Class for a more comfortable travel experience. Emirates First Class customers will find the BYREDO travel wellness range of skincare in their private suites. The allergen-free and Chamomile collections were exclusively created for Emirates for a relaxing and hydrating experience inflight. The collection by European luxury brand, BYREDO, was first introduced in Emirates’ new fully enclosed suites on the Boeing 777 last year and is now being rolled out across the fleet. The kits are paired with a faux leather notebook and branded pen.

What's New

Buzz facilitates Fly With Me Monster Favourites for kids onboard Emirates - Emirates has introduced new toys from the Emirates Fly with Me collection and Lonely Planet Kids activity kit bags for children travelling in all classes. The new range of toys will come in the top four favourite characters, as voted by customers and fans in a social media competition held last year. The Fly with Me magazine is also available onboard featuring puzzles, jokes and activities for children aged three to eight years old.

Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks updates children’s activity packs for Etihad Airways - Etihad Airways has updated its hugely popular ‘Etihad Explorers’ children’s activity packs. Milk Jnr’s & Kidworks, has revamped the children’s packs in various ways including changing the lead characters in the packs for three to eight year old passengers. Jamool the Camel and Boo the Panda take over from Kundai the Lion and Zoe the Bee. For nine to thirteen year- olds, the more mature activity pack has had a design refresh based around an exotic seascape theme. Content includes Sudoku, mazes, lined notes and join-the-dot games.

Etihad Airways Launches Major New Partnership With Acqua Di Parma - Symbolising modern elegance and authentic Italian style, iconic brand ACQUA DI PARMA has taken to the skies onboard Etihad’s The Residence, First Class and Business Class cabins, and at flagship First Class Lounge & Spa. The new collaboration was celebrated with a curated event at the St. Regis Hotel’s legendary Abu Dhabi Suite, which was decorated in a style inspired by the perfumer, and featured a unique perfume room where guests were given a personal fragrance experience by a team from ACQUA DI PARMA. Linda Celestino, Etihad Airways Vice President Guest Experience and Delivery, said: “ACQUA DI PARMA is universal in its appeal, effortlessly combining, traditional know-how, craftsmanship and innovation with a modern Italian, yet very international flair.’



What's New

Galileo Watermark partners EVA Air with French fashion brand SPORT b - Combining modern design and functionality, EVA Air is proud to launch its new Premium Economy amenity kit in partnership with Sport b. The stylish unisex kit is the perfect size for all the travel amenities and adds a modern touch of luxury to the onboard experience. The monochrome design, created by Galileo Watermark, reflects the iconic style of SPORT b. The kit includes a SPORT b. eye mask, dental kit, ear plugs, comb and a lip balm and face cream from British skincare brand Scaramouche + Fandango.

Spiriant and Egypt Air announce new amenity kit partnership - Egypt Air’s Business Class will offer its guests a brand new amenity kit combining the timeless design of a Cerruti bag and the sophistication of Aigner cosmetics for a perfect brand alignment.

FORMIA works with Qatar Airways to Offer Limited Edition Kit in Support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month - Limited edition pink amenity kits were offered to Qatar Airways’ passengers throughout the month of October to mark the airline’s continuing support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This year’s amenity kits, supplied by Formia, have been lined with a bespoke fabric featuring the famous pink ribbon, now synonymous with Breast Cancer Awareness. Each bag contains exclusive products from Italy’s Castello Monte Vibiano Vecchio, the environmentally friendly olive oil company.





buzz creates signature moments that enrich the journey. MELBOURNE . LOS ANGELES . SAN FRANCISCO . ATLANTA . MILAN . LONDON . DUBAI . SHANGHAI . HONG KONG



AN ALL DUTCH AFFAIR! by Debra Bradbury-Ward

Dutch Airline KLM was founded in 1919, making it the oldest airline in the world! So you would think they know a few things about keeping ahead of the game & their recent brand partnerships go a long way in confirming this.



etherlands lifestyle label, Rituals, recently announced their new partnership with KLM making it an all Dutch affair combining with and beautifully complimenting the KLM kits designed by Dutch clothing designer, Jan Taminiau. Going double dutch has created an offering of luxury and elegance epitomizing KLM as an airline of timeless antiquity. Jan Taminau has been onboard KLM for the past few years with Albea Travel Designer creating some beautifully classic designs for the airline and brand. In 2004, Jan launched his own clothes label JANTAMINIAU which has been shown on catwalks across the globe including Paris and New York. Over the years, Jan’s collections have graced the bodies of Queen Maxima, Lady Gaga and Beyonce, receiving international acclaim making it the perfect fit for the airline. However, in our opinion, we always felt there was a little something missing and that KLM needed to focus on acquiring a luxury cosmetic for that extra special touch.

and lip balm in Business Class. These products are the first to be released from the Amsterdam Collection which is inspired by the 17th century, when Dutch explorers began to travel around Asia discovering new cultures and exotic fragrances. This is portrayed in the Delft blue packaging synonymous with 17th century pottery that became prolific after the exploration of Asia, imitating Chinese porcelain. The scents in this new line are a true reflection of two cultures coming together combining Dutch Tulips and Japanese Yuzu evoking a sense of refreshment and relaxation during and after the flight. Personally I can’t wait to fly KLM so I can have one of these kits firmly tucked away in my hand luggage!

The Rituals Amsterdam Collection has more than stepped up to the mark and supplier, Albea, have undoubtedly risen to the challenge, producing a more cohesive kit with the two Dutch brands bringing a little touch of luxury for the KLM passenger with beautiful cosmetics and a beautifully designed bag complimenting one another, yet again beautifully! The Amsterdam Collection will be exclusively onboard KLM flights comprising of a hand foam in Economy Class, and a hand & body lotion, hair gel, body mist, face moisturiser 14





First Class Fizzle by Lily-Fleur Bradbury

Is the extinction of the iconic First Class Kit upon us? 16



A true romantic at heart and a lover of all things vintage, I can’t help but feel nostalgic towards the golden era of flying when it was at its prime and air travel was a novelty. The glitz, glamour and razzle dazzle of flying, where first class was the only cabin class on offer, was worth every penny, especially as travelling by plane was an unprecedented phenomenon. This special adventure was reserved for the upper echelons of society; the very few who could afford to pay a pretty price. Over the years, thanks to the continual advancement of flight technology, air travel gradually became more accessible and affordable for the masses, bringing us to the present day where flying has lost its shine and is merely a normality and necessity to get us from A to B. Fluidity of movement is essential for the modern world to function; whether that’s in business, vacations, relations, trade, the list goes on, and the journey no longer has that sense of adventure with only the destination holding our full attention. The evolution of onboard hospitality has seen the development and growth of cabin classes to suit guests’ budgets and comfort needs so much so that the disparity between Business and First is now at risk of becoming blurred and the idea of First class Suites could soon belong to a bygone era. After all, why pay first class when you can have just as much comfort, luxurious brands and delicious cuisine with less expense. It’s no wonder First Class ticket sales are in decline. Combine this with an average production cost of $3million for a 12 seater First Class cabin for the airlines, and its only logical that they are now taking measures to reduce the amount of First Class seating, if not get rid of it completely. The latest luxury suites may look futuristic but it’s questionable First Class has a future at all.

In a recent OAG survey, the industry has seen airlines devoting more space to Business Class passengers who are flying more frequently and take up less space than the occasional First Class flyer. Of the 5000 global airlines with ICAO codes, a mere 32 have the indulgence of First Class at their guests’ fingertips and wallets. This number is set to decrease as we see a revolution of cabin classes amongst frontrunners and industry trendsetters such as British Airways and Virgin Atlantic. British Airways

have ordered their new fleet of Airbus A350’s minus their usual First Class cabin suites, instead opting for an extreme cabin makeover with their new Club World Business Class which will include an all new Business Class seat design with a bigger emphasis on product upgrades and food and drink offerings. Virgin Atlantic are following a similar flight path having developed their all new Upper Business Class which Is set to be on offer on their new fleet of Airbus early 2019.

Air France La Premiere with Carita




Bvlgari onboard Emirates

Cerruti 1881 onboard Malaysia Airlines



For those airlines looking to reduce the size of First Class as opposed to axe it completely, there are more than a few obstacles sure to arise when it comes to onboard hospitality and budgets. When it comes to First Class amenity kit offerings and trends in the current onboard market, a certain precedent and level of expectation has been set. Brands dominate the industry with airlines continually on the hunt for the next best thing to lavish upon their guests. In the past 12 months, we have seen amenity bags bearing brands such as Lalique, Etro Profumi, Furla, Bric’s, Windsor, Cerruti etc with a pampering assortment of contents to match. However, is this level of luxury realistically sustainable in an ever diminishing First Class market? With a much smaller volume, buying in bulk will no longer be an option therefore limiting the airlines to


Singapore First Class

what they can afford in the way of the brands, food and drink.

Etro onboard Japan Airlines

As a result, airlines will either have to increase their budgets gifting their guests with the epitome of luxury above and beyond the current industry standard. OR, and what is far more inevitable, suppliers will be expected to become miracle-makers using the same budget, they originally had for bulk production, to create an offering on a smaller volume still worthy of exorbitant ticket prices. Either way to sell the limited seats on offer, airlines and suppliers will have to up their game as the fate of First Class Kits rests in their hands. If compromise and solutions aren’t found, then it is more than likely we will see First Class Flop and Fizzle out and the imminent extinction of the iconic First Class amenity kit along with it. AMENITIES MAGAZINE



The World’s First Winning the race with a world first, Rossiya Airlines has become the first airline to incorporate Augmented Reality Technology into their children’s kits offered onboard to their littlest brand ambassadors. It’s no secret that Technology and its potential onboard has dominated the amenity market in recent years, particularly AR. Having a keen understanding of this, AK-Service were determined to create an unforgettable passenger experience for children onboard Rossiya. The kits keep kids entertained with an interactive activity book where the special stickers come to life with the help of the ‘Rossiya Kids’ mobile app. 3D virtual animated objects appear when pointing your phone camera at the stickers, allowing children to immerse themselves into a bright magical world making for a great distraction during a boring flight. 20


Moreover, “Rossiya Kids” mobile app can be used anywhere after their flight. Children can re-use their 3D stickers for augmented reality construction on school notebooks, on their clothes, at home, and it will work wherever it is, delighting children and their friends!

Using augmented reality, AKService and Rossiya airlines have transformed kid’s entertainment onboard combining traditional board games with technology on trend and guaranteed to keep children, and more so their parents, happy!


TECH THAT KIT OUT! In a world driven by budgets, is there any space to advance technology in amenity kits past the initial stages?

Technology. We can’t live without it. From the computers on our desks to the smartphones we carry in our pockets, there is no denying that we have an obsession and a reliance on the very latest gadgets. I am no different; writing this aptly from 38,000 feet on a long haul flight across the Atlantic on a tablet with a bluetooth keyboard. Isn’t technology truly amazing? 22


It also seems to be ever-changing. As soon as you have bought the latest state-of-the-art item, by the time you have got it home, proudly taken it out of the box and charged it up, it is already ‘old hat’ and has been replaced by something new. The constant thirst to be at the forefront of fashion when it comes to gadgetry has kept the tech industry worth multi-billions worldwide, but has the aviation market managed to keep

by Hayley Hartland

up in its offerings onboard? And what is the ‘next big thing’ in technology in the amenities market? When travelling, whether you read, do a crossword or watch the evergrowing variety of films on the IFE system, there is no denying that we all need to do something to pass the time. A nine-hour flight can only be filled with so much people watching, and walking up and down the plane’s


aisles. We have all been guilty of getting twitchy, usually around the 5 hour mark once the complimentary wine has been drunk, a film (or two) has been viewed and the inflight meal is now a distant memory. Sometimes things get so bad that it seems sensible to tune in to watch the plane fly across the ocean in a futile bid to make it fly quicker to your destination. This is just the adults. Children are notoriously difficult to keep entertained on terra firma, nevermind when they are confined in a tin can at 38,000 feet. Children today are more used to technology than any generation before them. They are often better at navigating through apps and operating systems than any adult I have ever met. This creates a real challenge for the airlines when it comes to entertaining them onboard. As Amenities has explored before, children often wish to re-connect with their parents, and seek to include them in games and puzzles whilst onboard. However, it is no longer any use to just provide them with the simple amenity kits of old, those that contained crayons, colouring in books and puzzles, with the occasional card game to encourage parents to play along. It would be naïve to believe, in 2018 that these gifts are enough in isolation to keep our little ones entertained for the length of a long haul flight – sooner or later they will be back reaching for the technology they use everyday.

first flights, is a way of capturing brand loyalty long into the future. In video-gaming it has been said that the next big thing will be the use of Augmented and Visual Reality (AR/ VR) to really catapult players from their living rooms into the world of the game they are playing, so they can experience it 3D. Although this technology is currently in its infancy, there is no denying it is making a big impact, with VR headsets featuring on a number of kids’ (and big kids’) Christmas lists for the last couple of years. It appears that airlines seem to be finding this technology to be quite the catalyst for creative ideas, with a number of them creating prototypes that are making their way into everyday onboard items, in particular, and possibly not surprisingly, children’s kits. Air New Zealand for example has created a ‘spatial computing travel experience’ with Magic Leap, a multiplayer game experience that allows users through the use of a wearable computer to explore in incredible detail a 3D map of New Zealand where they can answer quiz questions, collect

golden eggs and meet a grumpy hobbit. Although very much in its infancy, Air New Zealand are spearheading this kind of technology and understand, in the words of their General Manager of Global Brand and Content Marketing, Jodi Williams, that it as an important step towards understanding the part spatial computing could play in the future of customer experience. Air New Zealand are by no means the only airlines to be experimenting with technology for their passengers. Lufthansa debuted their in-flight VR prototype on their Dubai bound flight in August, and excitingly AK Service have teamed up with Rossiya Airlines to create a fully comprehensive, interactive AR kid’s kit.

So what are the airlines doing to capture the imagination of these little travellers? As soon as their attention diverts away from the provided kits, and to their own technology Airlines have lost the opportunity to encourage brand awareness. Airlines know that these pint-sized passengers are the fee paying customers of tomorrow, and so to give them an exciting, innovative experience on some of their AMENITIES MAGAZINE



Today, the smallest of Rossiya Airline’s passengers have the opportunity to enjoy an activity book, which is brought to life by using the “Rossiya Kids” mobile app. This allows them to immerse themselves in a bright, magical world using the smartphone that we all now carry in our pockets. Using AR technology, the stickers in the book are brought to life and can be used and enjoyed long after the children’s journey is over. However, any technology onboard is only as successful as the airlines will allow it to be. In a world that is driven by budgets, and creating kits for the lowest price, is there any space to advance this technology past this initial stage? Without investment there cannot be any innovation, so the airlines may have to stretch themselves to begin to truly create some new and exciting entertainment products for the onboard market. Speaking to AK Service Danar, Head of Digital, he seems extremely positive about the future. He says ’the strong interest of airlines in AR/VR has surpassed all our expectations,’ but he believes airlines are realising it is the next way to ‘take kits to a whole new level and make every flight truly impressive.’ Airlines have long been concerned with the longevity of their amenity offerings. Wanting to make sure that they get the most ‘bang for their buck’ and their branding continues to be used long after the passenger’s journey is over. Danar believes that technology is the best way for airlines to achieve this. Although currently focused on the children’s market he considers that, AR technology can be utilised for adults, but it is important to ensure that it is ‘useful and interesting...and should have a value for each of them.’ Using AR and VR technology for travel seems a natural mix. Passengers 24


could explore their destinations before they get there, get facts and information in real time, learn new skills and maybe have a little fun along the way. Although this level of technology seems a little way off, who 50 years ago would have thought that we can now carry more technology in our pocket than they had in the first crafts that were shot into space?

It will certainly be exciting to see where technology will take the next stage of the amenities market. With gadgets and gizmos infiltrating every other part of our lives it seems inevitable that our travel experience will also soon be enhanced by them. It is clear that the kids are leading the charge, but I hope it isn’t too long until us young at heart get to play with some cool technology whilst travelling the world.


Behind the Product

Steve Wickham, Head of Compliance at Matrix, tells all when it comes to the needs of the workers who put the ‘work’ in ‘workforce’. 26



There is no doubt that we are facing some tough challenges in the immediate future as businesses and consumers strive to achieve environmental and anti-pollution targets, but equally important from a manufacturing perspective for high volume/low cost products such as airline amenities, is the future sustainability of the workforce in our factories. Whilst using recycled materials and supporting the circular economy by recycling waste is vital to the future health of the planet, looking after the workers in our supply chains is key to maintaining a stable and satisfied workforce especially in countries such as China with an aging working population. Consequently, the human story behind the products that we produce and use onboard is just as relevant as the technology and science behind the materials. Ethically minded travellers that are interested in seeing a reduction in plastic packaging are becoming equally interested in who made the products, what the factory looks like and where it’s located. The High Street has done this to great effect in recent years, so why not amenity suppliers and airlines too?

business, whereby the workers benefit from reduced stress, increased self-respect and potentially higher pay from more efficient production. As a result, the factory benefits from a stable workforce, improved production planning and increased capacity. Here at Matrix, we benefit from more reliable deliveries, improved product quality from retained skilled workers and competitive pricing, due to reduced wastage and less overtime premiums or penalties for late deliveries. Amenities manufacturers have suffered from a bad reputation in the past due to the low price point required for in-flight garments, toiletries and bags but our approach has had amazing results in recent years with worker satisfaction increasing to over 80% in factories, absenteeism reducing by an average of 6%, working hours reducing by 5% and takehome pay increasing by 16% from increased efficiencies.

More than this, we also asked workers in our supply chain what training they would like to receive and what changes would have the biggest impact on their day to day lives. Surprisingly, it was not all At Matrix, we place the concept about hours and pay as the survey, of the worker at the heart of our carried out at 25 factories, showed ethical trading strategy and carry that softer training topics such as out regular training and capacity Stress Management and Migrant building initiatives on the ground Parenting Skills proved the most to improve working conditions popular. Listening to the workers’ and address the root cause voice needs to be a key feature of Bedding Brands are in full bloom onboard, of absenteeism, high worker any forward-thinking supply chain however, when you take away the face value turnover and classic recurring of the brand, what are you really left with? as without talking to the workers, audit issues such as excessive how will factories understand working hours. This approach and be able to effectively address has enabled us to recently be awarded a Leader status worker needs? With the younger generation now having amongst our peers at the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) in more career options and seeking to avoid blue collar work, the UK and, more importantly, has helped to ensure the it is becoming harder and more expensive for factories to continued improvement of our supply chain whilst providing recruit and train new workers; so, as a result, it is more competitive advantage at the same time. We are also important for factories to do everything they can to hold on developing a platform to display transparent supply chain to their existing workforce. information digitally, which is really exciting. An Ethical approach can work commercially too and sourcing product the right way does not necessarily mean that products are more expensive. We have found that working in partnership with suppliers on a long-term basis and helping them to drive improvements in working conditions can create win-win-win opportunities for

Conditions in factories are not always perfect, especially in developing countries, but the important thing for suppliers is to embrace the true situation and start the conversation with workers and factory managers. It’s time to stop burying our heads in the sand or hide behind audit reports. Happy people make for Happy products! AMENITIES MAGAZINE


In the Spotlight with Federico Heitz Amenities Magazine caught up with Kaelis CEO Federico Heitz to hear his thoughts about the exciting onboard amenity market.

by Debra Bradbury-Ward


Air Astana Economy Kits

When was Kaelis established and what brought Kaelis into the onboard amenities industry? Kaelis was established in 1997. We entered the onboard services market in 2007, so we have been more than 10 years working on improving travel experience. Today, we serve over 100 airlines in more than 55 countries, reaching 1 billion passengers every year. Amenities is of course a big part of the onboard service experience and products. We provide the full range of amenities, from Kids kits, economy, premium economy, business, first class to overnight and pilgrimage kits. This year, it was the first time we presented amenities to the Travel Plus awards and were very successful having won the Best Economy Class amenity in the world.

What is the most significant change you have seen in the amenities market over the past 10 years? Over the last decade, we have seen lots of innovations in the amenity market. For example: making a collection of amenities, so passengers do not get the same amenity for three years, having a different model for men and women, the inclusion of more items, etc. The most significant one in my opinion is the creation of men/women sets. Although, still to come the differentiation of men and women amenity content. 30


What do you think the future of onboard amenities should be? I see a trend of airlines wanting to improve the travel experience of the premium class passenger, the gap with the economy class passenger is widening and the amenity kit is a big part of it. Therefore, I see the airlines caring and investing more and more in this strategy. This is also crucial in order to have a differential advantage when competing with the LCCs.

In the Spotlight

What are you most proud of? Businesswise, I am most proud of the fantastic team that we have in Kaelis, and also of the trust and recognition that Kaelis has established with its customers and stakeholders. I´m proud of the fact that one billion passengers (users) every year have access to Kaelis’ products.

Kaelis often works with exciting, young brands – how do you ensure you stay at the forefront of the market? Passengers are tired of always having the same “mainstream” brands everywhere. There are fantastic brands that have not been used onboard yet or very seldom, and that have a lot of value to add. There are also new products being included in the amenities like for example, Better Air, the only probiotic for the air, that is exclusively distributed for airlines by Kaelis.

Are airlines changing their needs and requests of you, the supplier? As I said, many airlines that were not giving much importance to the amenities, and in fact to the whole premium experience are seeing now that they want to upgrade the level of service, and their requests change accordingly. They are also looking for new designs and brands that don´t have that “same old” feeling.

What are your thoughts on some airlines’ move to allow Economy Class passengers to ‘purchase’ First or Business Class amenity kits during their journey? Ancillary revenue is definitely something all airlines must focus on, there is no question about that. On the other hand, the First and Business Class amenity is a huge part of the experience, and also reflects the exclusivity of traveling in a premium cabin. Giving Economy Class passengers access to it even if it is purchased, could undermine that premiumness. I guess it depends on the airline, for some it might make sense, for others it is definitely a no go.

THE PERSONAL TOUCH What is your favourite city? My favourite city is definitely London. First, that´s where I met my wife. Secondly, there is no other city as cosmopolitan and diverse as London. The gastronomical and cultural offer is amazing. I really feel I am in the center of the world when I visit it.

What is your favourite holiday destination? Brazil. I love its nature, its people and its music.

Favourite onboard tipple? A good white wine, if the temperature is right.

Passenger needs seem to evolve very quickly – do you think airlines are doing enough to keep up? Talking about “airlines” as a whole could be misleading. We work with over 100 of them and you have very different mindsets and focuses in this industry. Definitely, the “top performers” are doing a lot to keep up with passenger needs. Transformation plans of legacy carriers focused in maximising not only profitability but NPS scores are a great example. Including tying NPS results to executives´ bonuses.

What are your ‘travel essentials’? Noise cancelling headphones, my Kindle and comfortable clothing.

How do you like to pass the time when onboard? Like everybody else: foodtainment. LOL. Jokes apart: Reading books, watching movies, sampling the food and beverage available onboard, observing on how the airline/caterer present things and the service.




In bed with the brands! by Lily-Fleur Bradbury

Bedding Brands are in full bloom onboard, however, when you take away the face value of the brand, what are you really left with? Over the past year, the airline industry has proven that dreams can come true onboard with a blaze of beautiful bedding brands, ignited by United Airlines leading from the front with Saks Fifth Avenue. As a result, we have seen Casper join forces with American Airlines, Sheridan with Qantas, and now the promise of another sleep partnership on the horizon, as Eithad looks to replace Co-Co mat 32


bedding in the residency with an exclusive Swedish bedding brand. With wellness, meditation and sleep at the forefront of millennial buying power, it is no surprise that airlines, brands and suppliers alike have capitalised upon such an opportunity.


Nevertheless, despite being whole heartedly committed to their customer satisfaction, it seems to me that airlines have managed to patch up a downfall in the industry by simply masking it with shiny brands once again. Don’t get me wrong, being gifted with a plush pillow or blanket from any one of those brands would be a delight, but the devils advocate in me has to ask, when you take away the face value of the brand, what are you left with? What is so different and innovative about their sleep comfort products that make them the cream of the crop? The Industry have neglected the advice given by Doctor Russell Foster, Dr of Sleep at Oxford University from our Summer 2017 issue, ‘Sleepless In The Skies,’ and perhaps his words would do well to be repeated. Dr Foster specifically emphasized that, ‘Ultimately, airlines need to truly understand and genuinely address passengers’ number one concern – not just through brand partnerships, but rather a robust and scientifically proven set of practices.’ ‘Of robust and scientifically proven set of practices’, it’s fair to say, the industry has been more than lacking, with very few frontrunners innovating sleep products for the onboard market. The most prominent of these being Matrix, who initially introduced Dr Russell Foster to the world of amenities. The development of their hydra active pajamas ‘infused with patented technology from Celessence, microcapsules of nature’s purest, most efficient moisturisers and

Interstellar relaxation in a self-heating eye mask that alleviates strain on your eyes. The heating process works with a thin layer technology of iron filings entwining with the oxygen molecules in the air. Relieving tiredness and other tensions.

skin conditioners,’ has been a great success onboard Emirates, actively tackling hydration during sleep. It’s fair to say, Matrix are undoubtedly committed to giving airlines solutions to sleep as they also introduced products to the industry at last year’s WTCE , who I am astounded, are yet to go onboard. However, as a whole, when I plough through the internet, press releases and my memory of exbos and shows, my mind keeps coming up blank. Where are the other sleep innovations tackling the important elements of good sleep; sight, sound and smell. And before you say it, noise cancelling headphones and basic eyemasks are hardly new onboard. Perhaps its time for the industry to, dare I say,

think more laterally rather than literally, or even horizontally! If you’re a millennial through and through and suffer with a full nights sleep like myself, you would’ve perhaps heard of the Lumie Lamp. There are multiple variations of this sought after product that uses light therapy to simulate a natural sunset and sunrise. Some also use aromatherapy combining different scents for sleep and wake-up to feel refreshed and rejuvenated. Now realistically airlines cant afford to gift every passenger with a Lumie lamp, but could this technology be incorporated into some sort of eyemask that does more than just block out the buzzing lights of the cabin? Why aren’t airlines and suppliers alike thinking more outside the box when it comes to long-haul flights and sleep comfort brand partnerships? Of course, sleep comfort is subjective to an individual’s preconceived ideas of what it means to be comfortable, with upbringing and cultural background being the AMENITIES MAGAZINE



biggest influencers of this. During my research, I caught up with the creators of Octaspring, who have won multiple awards including a crystal cabin Award in 2017 and an Apex Award for Passenger Comfort Innovation for their new aerospace technology innovation in aircraft seat cushions. They also use their Octaspring technology for their Dormeo branch which specialises in mattresses keen to promote that ‘Sleep is Personal’ and that ‘Comfort is not just about how soft or firm a mattress is, but also about how the structure of the mattress supports your body.’ In the current climate of the airline industry, it’s impossible that one single bedding offering onboard will be the perfect combination for everyone therefore, until the year 3000 when airlines will be able to afford personalised mattresses for their guests, it’s imperative that they invest in the sleep amenities themselves, as there is no such thing as subjectivity when it comes to the science of sleep and the senses. The fluidity of travel has altered the way the world looks at flying. Once an adventure, it is now something that is a necessity that gets us from A & B, and for most business professionals a normal part of their everyday lives. This is not a branding boycott by any means and passengers will always appreciate luxury bedding set offerings onboard, however if all airlines are offering a different variation of the same thing it doesn’t necessarily mean I am going to stay loyal to one specific airline when I can experience a whole host of comfort brands. What will capture my attention, what will make me want to fly with you again is the product that actually rejuvenates me for my important meeting at the other end of a long flight. 34


Octaspring Technology

Lumi Lamp

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