Clear buys technology that takes the place of a traveler in the queue

Skift take

By acquiring Argentinian supplier Whyline, Clear is doubling down on the technology that allows travelers to reserve a place in the queue when they check-in for their flight. This “virtual queue” technology could also be used outside airports, such as in amusement parks, in conference venues and on cruise ships.

Sean O’Neill

Clear, the airport screening and biometric identity company, said on Tuesday it had acquired Whyline, a vendor of virtual queuing and meeting systems based in Argentina.

The companies did not disclose the value of the cash purchase. Whyline had raised $ 5.6 million in funding.

The deal is Clear’s first acquisition since going public on June 29, 2021. The initial public offering put $ 409 million on its balance sheet, facilitating future acquisitions.

Whyline helps companies manage customer flows through the use of virtual queues.

For example, Seattle Sea-Tac Airport passengers at three checkpoints can lower their waits at airport security by using a mobile app to see wait times live and entering their seat in a remote queue by booking their appointment in advance. The software alerts passengers when it’s time for them to show up in the fast lane and pass. Seattle’s Spot Saver program processed more than 187,000 bookings in the summer of 2021.

“Over the past five years, the Whyline team has developed impressive technology that helps improve our lives and daily routines,” said Caryn Seidman-Becker, CEO of Clear. “With this acquisition, we are helping people and partners spend less time waiting and more time doing what matters most to them. ”

Seidman-Becker said the deal will accomplish three goals: It will consolidate Clear’s lead as an airport reservation lane provider in signed contracts and ongoing testing at airports in Los Angeles, Seattle, Newark. , Charleston, Orlando and Calgary.

The transaction will help Clear grow beyond the United States, as Whyline has partners in Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, Peru and Canada.

The deal will also give Clear another product to sell to sectors other than travel, such as retail, banks and government agencies such as motor vehicle departments.

Clear’s strategy made clear

Update October 9, 2021

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