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Eunice Thecla Chepkemboi, Dr. Samson Nyang’au Paul


Purpose: This study sought to identify the effect of the uptake of disruptive innovations on the performance of selected airlines in Kenya. Its specific objectives included to determine the impact of digital platforms, mobile technology, Blockchain technology and travel intermediaries on the performance of selected airline in Kenya. This study was restricted to three airlines in Kenya, namely, Kenya Airways, Jambojet and Fly540.

Methodology: It focused on 120 staff working within the Nairobi offices of these airlines based on their familiarity with strategic initiatives employed in responding to disruptive innovations. The theoretical review featured the following theories: the theory of disruptive innovations; radical innovations theory; the theory of open innovation; and diffusion of innovations theory. This study applied a descriptive research design since it was focussed on describing the characteristics of the participants involved in the study since this is a social research. It adopted a census method for determining the sample size. It used self-administered questionnaires on 120 respondents from the target population who were given two weeks to complete the questionnaires before collection using a drop and pick arrangement was adopted. The study used a five point Likert scale to develop the questionnaire to use in tandem with two measures of central tendency, standard deviation and mean, to describe the data. The data was then examined using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (version 22) to conduct regression analysis, descriptive analysis and inferential analysis. The results were then presented using graphs and tables.

Results: The results indicate that travel intermediaries had the strongest positive correlation with performance followed by mobile technology adoption, digital platforms and blockchain technology, respectively. Further, whilst organisations in the industry have established commendable strategies to ensure digital platforms reliability and mobile technology adoption, they have yet to embrace blockchain technology as a strategy for coping with disruptive innovations. The same case applies to travel intermediaries where the local airline companies have not implemented effectively thus losing market to other upcoming international airlines.

Unique contribution to theory, practice and policy: The study recommends that the management of airlines in Kenya to adopt blockchain technology in order to further strengthen their IT systems and use this as a means of resisting possible blockchain technology-driven disruptive innovations. The companies also ought to embrace appropriate technologies to support travel intermediaries through which they tap the low income earners thus sustaining their performance.

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Digital Platforms, Mobile Technology, Blockchain Technology, Travel Intermediaries and Performnce of Airlines

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