What We’re Made Of: Jimmy M. von Korff, Immfly

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Jimmy M. von Korff, Immfly, writing from Barcelona.

What We’re Made Of is a Q&A series that looks at how companies in the aviation industry are tackling challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. We’ve had to adapt to changes in where, when and how we work, but we are resilient. If you would like to share your experience, e-mail editor@apex.aero.

Jimmy M. von Korff
Executive Chairman, Immfly
Location: Barcelona
Day 26 of working from home
Date of writing: April 3

Are you in lockdown right now?
Yes

Where are you writing from?
Home office, approximately one hour north of Barcelona and from our head office.

What’s your new office attire or go-to comforts during this time?
My main go-to comforts have been the opportunity to spend more time with family and to enjoy more open-air workspaces like a terrace or garden.

Have you or anyone you know been directly affected by COVID-19?
The most serious impact has been on the relatives of some of my colleagues who sadly lost elderly loved ones to the virus.

What news outlets are you following?
APEX Media, Future Travel Experience, Bloomberg, Wired. The Economist and Euronews.

“We’re focused on using our technology to help airlines maximize efficiency and boost revenues. Such services can be all the more important to get out of tough financial times.”

Describe where your business was at the end of 2019. What were your goals/projections for 2020?
We concluded 2019 with strong growth and the announcement of Boeing’s investment in our digital services. This was followed by news this year that IAG had chosen Immfly to maintain and develop its digital in-flight platform across a large part of its fleet of over 570 aircraft, which spans the British Airways, Vueling, Iberia and Level brands.

Can you share some specific challenges your business has faced as a result of the outbreak? How did you overcome them and how can the industry learn from your experiences?
Given the crisis that our airline customers are going through, it is key for us to show solidarity through our actions. We agreed to put the announcements of some of our new airline partnerships on hold. Our strong assets, culture of transparent customer relationships and infrastructure for facilitating customer support all contribute to working through the current lockdown. Ultimately, we’re focused on using our technology to help airlines maximize efficiency and boost revenue. Such services can be all the more important to get out of tough financial times.

Any tips on how to remain productive under these new circumstances?
Remote working was already prevalent in our company culture long before the lockdowns began. This is in part due to the very nature of our business; we focus on enabling airlines to carry out tasks more efficiently remotely by using connectivity to manage services on board instead of having to be physically present on each aircraft.

Can you give an example of generosity or kindness displayed by your company or one of your colleagues during this crisis?
A striking example was the solidarity among staff who voluntarily proposed extraordinary conditions to ensure a member of the team would not be affected as a result of potential budget implications.

What has your company done to join the efforts to combat the spread of coronavirus?
Several articles have made reference to the way wireless in-flight entertainment systems enhance in-flight hygiene by promoting the use of personal devices in lieu of material stored in seat pockets or other shared items. Our technology is providing airlines this possibility while also enabling them to maximize revenue opportunities and to affect operational efficiencies. We are also providing a voice on our platform for efforts made by global organizations working to fight diseases, provide humanitarian assistance and stimulate economic growth by incorporating the award-winning videos and podcasts from United Nations in Action in our content portfolio.

What’s one thing that will never be the same again for commercial aviation?
In the same way that significant events such as 9/11 set new precedents in our industry, it is likely that new protocols will be established and applied to improve preparedness and response to public health events in the future.

Read more about the coronavirus impact on the air travel industry, including APEX’s position on the matter, and subscribe to the APEX Daily Experience newsletter to stay up to date.

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