American Express has revealed plans to create a joint venture in a move it said will accelerate the transformation of its Global Business Travel (GBT) division.
Under the JV, Amex could maintain 50% ownership with an investor group led by Certares International Bank holding the remaining 50%.
The investor group, which Amex said has “significant experiences in the travel industry” will invest between $700 million and $1 billion into the JV, with the funds used to “grow the GBT business”.
GBT employees are expected to move to the new structure, which, subject to agreements and regulatory approval, will be completed in the second quarter of 2014.
“We’ve been making strong progress in our efforts to transform our corporate travel business,” said Stephen J Squeri, Amex group president Global Corporate Services. “The first phase of this transformation, announced earlier this year, has been focused on reducing the cost structure within GBT through our technology and infrastructure advances.
“The JV we plan to form represents the next phase of this transformation which is aimed at accelerating the growth of this business through additional investments.”
Those investments would help develop new products, services and capabilities to “meet the evolving needs of our current customers, attract new ones and continue to build our international business.”