Microsoft is projecting that a blockchain proof-of-concept developed with Australian travel agency Webjet will move to the pilot stage in 2017.

Speaking at CoinDesk’s annual developer conference, Construct 2017, Microsoft senior software development engineer Cale Teeter and technical architect Eric Maino said that they expect the project, which aims to facilitate travel bookings via a blockchain-based system, will attain its new development status within the coming months.

“Webjet wanted to see, instead of everyone running their own proprietary systems, a system that connects companies they own,” Maino said. “They’ve been running their real data through it and they’ve been finding interest discrepancies in the business, and they’re hoping to expand it out.”

Announcing the scheme in November, Webjet managing director John Guscic said that the online booking process has become prone to issues due to the multiple systems used for its business silos, such as hotel room wholesaling.

“Between five and 10% of bookings can be impacted or, in other words, up to $10bn-worth of transactions,” he said in a statement made at the time.

The project was billed as a “first-of-its-kind travel industry blockchain” by the two companies.

Image via Pete Rizzo for CoinDesk

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