Posted by William Charles on March 11, 2019
Credit Cards

Published on March 11th, 2019 | by William Charles

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American Express Acquires LoungeBuddy

American Express has acquired airport lounge booking/review app/website LoungeBuddy. The acquisition is expected to be completed by April 2019. American Express owns and runs a number of lounges under the Centurion brand that are accessible for Platinum & Centurion cardholders. In addition those cardholders also get Priority Pass lounge access. Chris Cracchiolo, Senior Vice President, Global Loyalty and Benefits, American Express had this to say:

With the acquisition of LoungeBuddy, we will be able to leverage its cutting-edge platform to develop additional ways to become an essential part of our Card Members’ digital lives.

It will be interesting to see what American Express does with LoungeBuddy. There is an obvious conflict of interest with one of the lounge operators owning a lounge review site although given the restricted nature of the Centurion lounges I’m not really sure that matters. I suspect this will give American Express a lot of data in regards to the most used lounges. The American Express app currently already uses LoungeBuddy information with the ‘Find A Lounge’ feature. I’m guessing part of the acquisition will be leveraging LoungeBuddy to sell non-American Express cardholders things like the Platinum card.

 



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Abey

Just thinking out loud, wouldn’t it be better if instead of buying airport lounges they buy actual bank branches?

Not Your Lawyer
Not Your Lawyer

A bank branch has never fed me breakfast and gotten me drunk at 10am.

Joe
Joe

Sounds like you need to switch banks

ProudMoney

Or they might have bought it to kill it off after extracting any technological features from it that suit them. Seems like sort of a strange acquisition otherwise.

Grant

I personally never read the lounge reviews, if there is a lounge open and convenient to get to, I will try to check it out.

I like your idea of AMEX seeing which lounges most LoungeBuddy members visit and then building Centurion Lounges there (possibly by buying an existing lounge and converting it into a Centurion Lounge).

Another idea, maybe AMEX will give AMEX Platinum Cardholders a few free LoungeBuddy passes every year to visit lounges where AMEX does not have a lounge presence.

Spencer
Spencer

The Amex play here might be to expand loungebuddy relationships with existing lounges to allow access to American Express cardholders.

Bank insider
Bank insider

So search ORD on lounge buddy until Amex builds one there- got it

Ed
Ed

I noticed recently that AMEX was using Loungebuddy on the AMEX site when you go look for a lounge. It seemed odd but it is similar to a lot of business that have reviews on their own webpage.

J T
J T

This might sound far fetched… But notice that you can make reservations to lounges through the loungebuddy website. Maybe Amex would like to end their contract with Priority Pass, and start giving access to the locations in Loungebuddy’s own network.

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