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Joan Vilà - Hotelbeds’ Executive Chairman announces decision to move to non-executive role

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Joan will continue to support Hotelbeds as non-executive Director, forming part of one of the most experienced boards in the travel industry, where he also remains a committed shareholder. Nicolas Huss appointed CEO.

PALMA, SPAIN - Hotelbeds’ Executive Chairman, Joan Vilà, after dedicating more than 30 years of his career to driving significant innovation, transformation, and growth, is announcing his decision to move to a non-executive role on the Board of Hotelbeds with effect from today.

Joan had originally planned to step back from the day to day running of the company in 2020, but the impact of COVID-19 required him to delay the move to focus on successfully navigating the company through the global crisis. Now, with a strengthened balance sheet and with the company in a good position to capitalise on the recovery once travel demand returns, Joan believes that this is the right time for him to follow his original plan to move to a non-executive role on Hotelbeds’ board.

Joan Vilà commented: “I am immensely proud of everything the Hotelbeds family and I have achieved together, so first and foremost I want to thank our incredible employees and my Executive team for their passion and dedication. From our early days as an incoming DMC business in Spain, to our transformation to become a world leading traveltech player, active in all major source markets and destinations worldwide - it’s been a real rollercoaster! The pandemic of the past 12 months alone is just one example of the many challenges we have had to overcome as a team, but time and again, our dynamic and agile culture has given us the competitive advantage to outmanoeuvre our competitors.”

“While as a non-executive Director and committed shareholder, I will continue to be very much involved in the next stages of Hotelbeds’ success story, I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all of our hotel partners, clients and industry colleagues who have always supported us and played such an instrumental role in our success.

“I am looking forward to continuing to support Hotelbeds as well as other companies, in a non-executive capacity, which is something I’ve always been keen to do.

“With the appointment of Nicolas Huss, we are welcoming a highly experienced CEO with an incredible track record in the areas of B2B, travel and payments and we are very much look forward to the significant contribution and perspective he will bring to the company. Together with Hotelbeds’ greatly respected Executive team, including COO, Carlos Muñoz and CFO, Andrés García-Tenorio we are ready and able to further build on our incredible success story.”

Nicolas Huss, the former CEO of Ingenico and Visa Europe, is an experienced board-level executive and CEO with a very strong reputation in the payments, financial services and travel industries, where he has led significant growth, transformation and innovation. He brings to Hotelbeds extensive experience in leading technology and digital companies as well as a proven track record for driving organic growth. A French national, Nicolas has a truly international background and has lived and worked in many countries, including Spain where he was previously based for seven years.

Nicolas Huss said: “I’m really looking forward to taking the reins at Hotelbeds, the market leader in its segment. Joan Vilà’s strategic vision and relentless drive to innovate and internationalise has created a wonderful company and a fantastic workforce with a truly dynamic culture. Together with Carlos Muñoz and Andrés García-Tenorio, and the rest of the highly experienced Executive Leadership Team, we are well positioned to continue delivering mutual growth together with our valued supplier partners and clients.”

Richard Solomons, currently non-executive Chairman of the Advisory Committee is now also appointed as non-executive Chairman of the Board.

Richard Solomons commented: “Joan Vilà established a true global leader in the industry - a dynamic, ambitious and innovative company – and on behalf of all stakeholders, I would like to thank him for the vision and leadership that has made all this possible and I’m delighted that Joan will remain on our Board.

“It is a pleasure to welcome Nicolas to the team. His experience and track record of leading very large, complex, multi-national businesses means that he is ideally suited to become the new CEO of Hotelbeds. The company is really well positioned to continue fulfilling a key role in the intermediated travel space by further differentiating and building on the last 20 years as a value-add partner to both hotels partners and travel distributors.”

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