I’m happy to say my entry on CruiseMatch inspired at least one person, especially since that person happens to be our Chairman & CEO Richard Fain. Richard was involved in the birth of CruiseMatch and has enthusiastically supported its development over the years. Here is his postscript:
“Adam, seeing your blog about the next advance of CruiseMatch reminded me of its origins. It is hard to imagine, but this was back at a time when fax machines were still novel. We wanted to equip our travel partners with the latest technology and thought we were very advanced because we were giving away fax machines to travel agents just so they could receive confirmations of bookings.
While we thought that was impossibly futuristic, Ken Trippe was thinking even further into the future. He envisioned a computer system that would seamlessly connect us with our travel agent partners for all aspects of the booking process. He did more than envision it. He developed a system which he called CruiseMatch which would give travel agents direct access into our booking system. It would simplify their task, eliminate communication errors and make the whole process more efficient.
It seemed too good to be true and most of the industry was skeptical. But Ken insisted that we at least look at it with an open mind. Ken had given me my first job out of school and he had mentored me for much of my career, so I couldn’t refuse. Ken presented his “baby” to us and we were all blown away. The Son-of-a-Gun actually worked and did all he said it would. Who would have imagined? CruiseMatch became a crucial tool for us and for our travel agents. It has evolved continuously and Ken would be proud that his creation has advanced to the new level you described in your blog. It is one of his beautiful legacies.”