"It has been a year and a half of many challenges and that is always stimulating"
In an exclusive talk, Jerónimo Pou, country manager of Assist Card Argentina, analyzed the present of the company and highlighted its differential values.
After completing a year and a half of management as country manager of the company, what is your assessment? What were the main challenges you had to face?
The balance is extremely positive, it has been a year and a half of many challenges and that is always stimulating. The main challenge has to do with continuing to develop the growth and leadership of the company at the national level. We are the leading company in the category, which entails the need to always be at the forefront, constantly innovating in technological solutions that help show the services and constantly expand our product portfolio.
How does Telemed currently work, the telemedicine solution that is contained within the company's APP?
Telemed is the exclusive telemedicine service of Assist Card, which allows users to remotely and, through a digital platform, a video call with a clinical doctor and / or pediatrician from any mobile device, anywhere, anytime . The health professional attends the call as a traditional medical consultation, providing an immediate and accurate diagnosis.
How it worked the traditional promotion 2x1 so that the fans of the Argentine Selection traveled safe during the last World Cup?
Our traditional 2x1 promotion was carried out very well, both through our direct sales channels and through travel agencies. Substantially, the World Cup event helped the promotion to be a success, given that we accompanied it with an exclusive design called "Operativo Rusia", which was a set of services and benefits for fans to enjoy the Cup. of the world.
Recently signed an alliance with Garbarino Viajes, how is this agreement coming about? What do these types of projects mean for the company?
The agreement is proving excellent, given that this alliance allowed us to have all our products available for Garbarino Viajes customers, through the 16 direct sales branches they have throughout the country, as well as through its digital channel and telephone routes. This type of projects are part of the commitment we have to provide the best assistance solutions for travelers, and for this, we constantly work to generate strategic alliances with the main players in the industry.
How was the winter season for the company?
It was a good season where we redouble our bet in Bariloche through our classic Assist Card Point, where travelers could enjoy discounts and relax, as well as we did with our medical center integrated by a staff of excellence with 22 professionals from health and two state-of-the-art ambulances. As in previous seasons, it is a pleasure to be again accompanying our travelers in the main winter resort of the region, so we designed an operation based on cutting-edge infrastructure that assisted them before any medical event, in addition to guaranteeing a space for them rest and enjoy multiple discounts.
How is the relationship with the OTAs today? And with the traditional travel agencies?
The relationship with both is and was always excellent. For us it is fundamental to count on your support and to work in a joint manner, since they are a fundamental ally to make the travelers aware of all our products and services. They provide us with their know-how on what the preferences and needs of the passengers are, and in contrast to the company, we always seek to provide them with tools that facilitate their commercial process, all in order to provide the customer with a better experience. In the particular case of the OTAs, the technological infrastructure acquires great importance, since we are the only ones that can guarantee them a full integration that facilitates their commercial process.
How does the Smart product work now?
Our Smart product, marketed exclusively through direct sales channels in all countries, is working well and showing a growing trend. These benefits are complemented with others of indirect sale, and it is a base proposal where travelers can add Add ons and thus have a tailor-made offer. This category is diversifying in terms of possibilities and availability, considering new segments such as for the elderly.
How do you analyze the situation of the Argentine market today, after the constant economic swings?
I think that Argentine companies in general are used to having to adapt to different situations. Even though the effect on the dollar's dollar has started to be seen since June, I think we will settle quickly and without problems to these new conditions. Also, I remain very positive with respect to the tourism industry, since people do their best to travel and make it safe.
What is the company's biggest differential with other international assistance groups?
We are the foundational leaders of the category for more than 45 years, with a great global structure that supports us with operations in 190 countries and with more than 1,200 employees. The latter is key, given that we are people thinking and working for people, so human capital is our main asset. Additionally, we continuously strive to innovate in the development of new products and technological solutions that improve the experience of travelers.