Major wholesalers merge to create European specialist

Major wholesalers merge to create European specialist

Two of Australia’s most respected specialist wholesale companies have shacked up to create a powerful new dream team.

That’s right, Entire Travel Group and CIT Holidays have unveiled plans for a merger, creating an exciting new venture offering unrivalled expertise in travel to Europe, North America and the Pacific.

Entire Travel Group operates a spate of European and Pacific specialist wholesale brands, including French Travel Connection, Tahiti Travel Connection, Spain & Portugal Travel Connection, New Caledonia Travel Connection and most recently Barge Travel Connection.

Established in Sydney in 1971, CIT Holidays has for more than 45 years been Australia’s leading Italian travel specialist.

The company was acquired in 2015 by Adventure World founder Peter Newsom and Alpin Group and has since expanded its focus to include Switzerland.

In 2017 the company also acquired Canada & Alaska Specialist Holidays.

As of 1 July 2018,  all brands will operate under the Entire Travel Group umbrella, with Managing Director McDonnell assuming the newly-created role of Chief Executive Officer and Newsom continuing to take an active role as a member of the company’s Board.

Operations will be consolidated within Entire Travel Group’s recently expanded North Sydney offices.

McDonnell said that by bringing together two highly-complementary businesses – both recognised leaders in European travel wholesaling – the new group will deliver significant benefits to Australian travel agents.

“Combining our respective knowledge, expertise and experience will allow us to offer our travel agency partners access to an unparalleled range of European products and services, along with the support of an expanded team of dedicated specialist consultants for each destination,” McDonnell said.

“In addition, we see clear opportunities to enhance the depth of our product offering across Western Europe through the alignment and expansion of our established on-ground product teams in Italy, France and Spain.”

McDonnell said the merger will also facilitate investment in important agency support services, including industry-leading technology platforms.

Newsom said the merger will create a unique wholesale group.

“By bringing together two of the Australian travel industry’s most respected and successful companies we are creating a powerful specialist operator, perfectly positioned to meet the needs of our much-valued industry partners and to seize what we believe are new and exciting opportunities for growth,” Newsom said.

McDonnell also said an announcement will be made shortly on the appointment of a high-profile Sales & Marketing Director with responsibility for driving the Entire Travel Group’s trade distribution strategy and managing key industry relationships.

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