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Boston Fireside Chat w/ Sundar Narasimhan (Google) and Valyn Perini (OpenTravel)

Our next meetup will be a fireside chat with Sundar Narasimhan, a Director of Product management at Google and CTO of ITA Software and Valyn Perini of the Open Travel Alliance.

When: Wednesday July 24th, 2013, 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Where: Techstars, One Cambridge Center, 6th Floor, Cambridge, MA 
Cost: Free entrance and free refreshments

  • How ITA Software grew from a research project into the engine powering the biggest flight providers in the world (including Kayak, Bing, and Orbitz)
  • How travel distribution is evolving with the development of IATA's NDC
  • Developments in Google's flights, hotels, and social/mobile marketing strategy


ITA Software is a leading provider of innovative solutions for the travel industry.

Founded in the mid-nineties by
MIT computer science graduates, ITA Software has pioneered a new generation of travel technology. Its world-class engineers and travel industry experts are solving the industry’s most complex computing challenges, and in doing so reshaping its very foundations.


Sundar Narasimhan oversees development and delivery of Google's travel distribution products in his capacity as CTO of ITA Software (acquired by Google in 2010). Before joining ITA Software, Narasimhan was chief scientist at Ascent Technology Inc., a leading provider of complex resource planning, scheduling, and allocation solutions for airlines, airports, and the US Department of Defense. He also played key founding roles in startups in the CAD software and robotics areas, and has consulted for several major New York financial trading firms.

Narasimhan is the coauthor of "On to Java" (AddisonWesley) and has published numerous technical articles in peerreviewed journals and online publications. He holds doctorate and master's degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science fromMIT and a B.Tech from IIT, Madras.


The OpenTravel Alliance is passionate about solving the problems inherent with connecting multiple systems within the complex travel distribution arena. OpenTravel's mission is to engineer specifications to ensure traveler and supplier information flow smoothly throughout travel, tourism and hospitality. OpenTravel creates, expands and drives adoption of open specifications, including but not limited to the use of XML, for the electronic exchange of business information among all sectors of the travel industry.


Valyn Perini is an experienced travel professional with more than fifteen years in hospitality and travel operations, sales and marketing, systems, consulting, and software development. As CEO of OpenTravel, Ms. Perini oversees the operations of the organization, including developing and executing strategies to reach the goal of standardizing electronic distribution of traveler information in the travel industry.

ABOUT OUR HOSTS: This meetup is made possible through the generous sponsorship of Goodwin Procter. Goodwin works with individuals and investors leading the way in new technologies and markets.  Their award winning website,, is a great resource that provides free access to critical start-up forms, memorandum, best practices and other resources to form, operate and protect your start-up.

We're excited to be hosted by Techstars in Kendall Square. Techstars provides seed funding from over 75 top venture capital firms and angel investors who are vested in the success of your startup, as well as intense mentorship from hundreds of the best entrepreneurs in the world.

Enjoy a wine, beer and snacks and network with awesome people in travel technology and startups!

6:30-7:00pm: Networking 
7:00-8:15pm: Introductions, Presentation/Discussion, Q&A 
8:15-9:00pm: More networking and wrap-up

We would appreciate it if you would tweet the event using the hashtags #travel20 and/or #traveltech. As always, if you know people who are interested in travel and mobile technology, please feel free to invite them to join our group! Also, if you know of travel startups who you believe would be good candidates to present at a Travel 2.0 in the near future, please email Mike Coletta at [masked] We regularly hold events in New York and San Francisco as well.

Thanks, and we hope to see you on July 24th!

- Gillian Morris (Founder, TripCommon) and Mike Coletta


Join or login to comment.

  • Mike C.

    Insigntful and thought-provoking chat about the future of travel technology. Great job Gillian for organizing this!

    1 · July 25, 2013

  • Damion n. w.

    The Africa Tourism SUmmit, the largest procurement summit in Us for Africa travel
    Director & Founder

    July 18, 2013

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