Travel Agents

Exclusive: Sandra Chiles and John Terry on TMS’s acquisition of inPlace

Ali Coulton

Yesterday TMS Talent Group announced the acquisition of inPlace Recruitment.

That’s right, folks, another acquisition.

Only, this time it’s in recruitment, rather than hotels or agencies which seems to be the norm right now.

See also: Virtuoso MD on Acquisitions: It’s glory days for niche operators 

Sandra Chiles, travel and hospitality recruitment legend and inPlace Recruitment’s managing director and founder, told Travel Weekly the acquisition would be great for both clients and candidates.

“It’s going to give them access, not just for Sydney or even Australia, but internationally because TMS is a global brand whereas inPlace have been purely Australian,” she said. 

“It gives them a wider scope especially at a more senior level for opportunities overseas and in turn for people overseas coming to Australia in the travel and tourism and hospitality industries.”

Chiles said after 37 years in travel recruitment, she’s looking to step back from day to day.

“However I will still maintain a presence in the travel and tourism industry as it has been my greatest love,” she told us. 

“My passion is getting people into the travel industry and keeping them in with this great industry.”

John Terry, Global MD of the TMS Talent Group, said the acquisition has been in the works for some time.

Me and Sandra have been in talks for a little while now, and she wanted to take a bit of a step back,” he told us.

“We’ve been friendly rivals in the market for a number of years so it just made a lot of sense and it’s been a seamless transition.”

In the past year, things have begun taking off for TMS.

“We opened offices in Melbourne and Bangkok, to get a bit of a global reach, and then last September I flew to London and we acquired a company called New Frontiers,” he said. 

“So we have New Frontiers in London, TMS in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Bangkok plus this new acquisition in place as well.”

“It’s been a crazy year.”

For Terry, it’s the shared clients and candidates that will make all the difference.

“There will be a lot of crossovers but they will be bringing over a lot of different clients we didn’t have, and we have some they didn’t have.”

“There will be more opportunities for both of our clients and candidates.”

“Another aspect is they’re bringing in a strong hospitality division, we’ve always been 95 per cent travel so to expand that hospitality sector for us is great.”

“Essentially, clients get double the amount of service, candidates get double the opportunity, it’s a win-win all around.”


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