"We're thrilled with these outstanding results for 2012, which exceed our initial previsions and show a doubling of our sales in three years' time!" said Pierre-Stephane Austi, Rail Europe’s CEO. "Despite a difficult worldwide economic context, Rail Europe managed, once again, to achieve a double digit growth, contributing to the growth of the whole industry and affirming its leadership role" Austi added.
“Despite the challenging market conditions, Rail Europe achieved significant results in Middle East markets with 30% incremental sales in 2012 to continue positive results been achieved in 2011. This is along with more focused marketing and commercial strategies to offer the maximum support to travel agents and travellers from the region” said Waleed Ahmed, the regional manager of Rail Europe Middle East in Dubai.
However, the growth on the e-commerce platforms of Rail Europe nearly doubled with the traditional sales channel grew marginally. Of course, the growth would have been higher if not for the extremely popular promotion on the Swiss Pass that allowed one adult to travel free with one paying adult. With the timing of this global promotion coinciding with the Indian peak travel period, the number of passengers grew by a much higher rate than the revenue. With the rupee stabilizing in the last quarter of 2012, sales gained momentum and it looks promising to sustain through 2013”.
2012's other major highlights were
- the 2nd edition of RIDE -Rail Europe's International Distribution Event-, which gathered in Paris during 2 days more than 250 professionals of the rail industry (carriers, distributors and tourist offices)
- the launch of Rail Europe Connexion, an inspirational magazine proposing travel ideas and rail itineraries, distributed to over 2 million readers in 20 countries
- the launch of Italo, the new Italian high speed train, operated by NTV, thus transforming Rail Europe's distribution system into a truly neutral distribution platform, with more opportunities to travel by train in Italy.
In 2013, Rail Europe will accelerate this strategy thanks to the introduction of new products in its -already large- product portfolio, ambitious partnership and promotional programs, new innovative distribution solutions, and of course close support to all markets, fast growing and mature markets alike.
2013 will also see the direct connections of Rail Europe's distribution system to Trenitalia's & Deutsche Bahn's distribution systems produce full-year results. Rail Europe expects significant sales from these connections, which allow Rail Europe customers and trade partners to access the same offer as in Italy or Germany, with real time access to all trains, fares (including the most discounted ones) and promotions, as well as to advanced functionalities like e-ticketing.