Latest News
HomeRegional NewsAfricaNew Kuoni group structure to further drive growth as a global diversified travel company
An updated corporate structure from 1 October 2011

New Kuoni group structure to further drive growth as a global diversified travel company

Following its acquisition of online travel services provider GTA in May 2011 and as the final part of a three-year investment and cost-reduction programme, the Kuoni Group has an updated corporate structure from 1 October 2011. This sees various business units grouped organisationally according to their business models, activities, geographical spread, growth prospects, customer portfolios and management requirements.    

The prime components in the structure will be the three divisions of:
– Outbound Europe (European tour operating)
– Global Travel Services (business-to-business FIT & group travel and MICE)
– Emerging Markets & Specialists (tour operating Emerging Markets and specialist outbound and inbound operators worldwide and VFS Global)

The members of Group Executive Board will remain unchanged, but assume different responsibilities. The group structure will focus on the following growth drivers:
– expanding activities in Asia
– the sustainable development of the European tour operating business
– the integration of Gullivers Travel Associates (GTA)
– expanding existing and creating new growth areas.

"Combining our various business activities all over the world into three new divisions is a logical consequence of our growth strategy, our acquisition activity and a result of our investment and cost-reduction programme, which will end in 2011,” says Peter Rothwell, CEO of the Kuoni Group. "Following the acquisition of GTA, Kuoni is fast developing into a diversified global travel group with strong activities in Asia. Our updated group structure will enable us to better position our existing tour operating businesses and take full advantage of cross border and cross company synergies. At the same time, it will equip us to accelerate our development of those activities – especially our Asian business – that have strong growth credentials.”

The three new divisions of the Kuoni Group will comprise the following business activities (see also the organisation chart):

Division Outbound Europe
This division will be home to all the Kuoni Group’s European tour operating activities in both the premium travel and the package tour segments plus our Scandinavia-based airline Novair and the Playitas sports and leisure resort on Fuerteventura. The division will not include the group’s autonomous specialist travel brands (which will be incorporated into division Emerging Markets & Specialists). The Outbound Europe division represents a further bundling of strengths and resources within the Kuoni Group’s European tour operating business. The division will also include the group’s global Procurement & Production unit that was established at the end of 2009. The reorganisation sees the creation of a new dedicated pan European online business unit within Outbound Europe that will manage all the group’s websites which are in direct (B2C) customer contact. The new online business will also encompass the present online part of the Group Distribution unit and the B2C business of Octopus Travel, which was acquired with the purchase of GTA. The Outbound Europe division will be led by Group Executive Board member Leif Vase Larsen.

Division Global Travel Services
The integration of Gullivers Travel Associates (GTA) into the existing activities of Kuoni Destination Management (KDM) creates the Division Global Travel Services. The new division consists of the core business-to-business (B2B) activities of online Fully Independent Travellers (FIT), group leisure travel and MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences & Events). The concentration of the same business segments from GTA and KDM within the same division will generate synergies announced with the acquisition of GTA earlier this year and it will drive above-average growth. Global Travel Services will be led by Group Executive Board member Rolf Schafroth.

Division Emerging Markets & Specialists
The Emerging Markets & Specialists division will accommodate the Kuoni Group’s tour operating activities in Asia (India, China and Hong Kong), Russia and the visa facilitation services of VFS Global. The division will also be home to the group’s portfolio of autonomous specialist outbound travel brands, along with its specialist inbound destination management service providers (Asian Trails, Desert Adventures Tourism, Private Safaris, AlliedTPro, Sita, Distant Frontiers and Australian Tours Management). These brands share the key features of strong entrepreneurial leadership and a keen customer focus, and are active in a business segment that offers substantial growth prospects. The division will be led by Group Executive Board member Stefan Leser.

The updated Kuoni Group structure will be effective from 1 October 2011. The group’s global functional units (Finance, Group IT, Corporate Identity & Design, Corporate Communications, HR and Corporate & Business Development) will continue to report directly to CEO Peter Rothwell. The Kuoni Group reporting for the 2011 business year will be based on the present group structure. Turnover in the range of CHF 5 billion is expected for the 2011 financial year as a whole, and EBIT margin similar to 2010.