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Airline Food & Beverage Inventory Shrinkage Costs Billions

You know those little bottles of wine and liquor they serve on the airplane? The airline industry purchases $2 billion worth of those and other food and beverage items every year. What used to be just peanuts or pretzels is now complemented by Coke products, beer, wine, those awesome Delta Biscoff cookies (YUM!!), and full meals for the lucky folks who sit in the front of the plane. The problem is that 30-40% of those items just up and disappear, and there’s not currently a user-friendly method of managing that inventory on the plane between take-off and landing.

Computer Vision

David Haley has created a solution to this problem. His company is called Countalytics. All the flight staff has to do is take a picture of the stock of items, and the Countalytics system recognizes each item in the picture, counts it, and stores that inventory count to measure against in-flight sales. This is a big problem in a big industry. And the airline industry is, for mostly regulatory reasons, notoriously slow to adopt new solutions. However, this one is a mobile app that any flight crew can use with ease by just taking a picture.

Airline Industry Experience

What David neglected to mention in his pitch, and which is crucial to the viability of his pitch, is that he has worked in the airline industry for many years. This omission goes to the “Who are you?” portion of the pitch. If you have deep domain knowledge, that’s a huge portion of your pitch because it gives you credibility towards solving the problem.

Solid Ask

David made it clear that Countalytics needs its first beta customer. That’s as honest as you can get, and as clear as he can possibly make it. What that “ask” tells you is:

  • Countalytics is new
  • They have no traction yet
  • They are in beta
  • No revenue
  • Ready to put the app in users’ hands

Thanks to David and Countalytics for practicing their pitch at Pitch Practice. If you have a friend in the airline business, David would like to talk with you.

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