Proposal to close Titan sister brand Tailor Made Travel

Proposal to close Titan sister brand Tailor Made Travel

Staff at Titan Travel Group sister brand Tailor Made Travel are in a 30-day consultation following a proposal to close the business.

The 30 Cheltenham-based employees are in consultation until May 8 when a final decision will made on the future of the brand, which began working with the trade last year and specialises in bespoke holidays to the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Staff and management will be offered the opportunity to transfer to Titan's head office in Redhill, Surrey, or face redundancy unless a buyer can be found.

The consultation follows a strategic review of the business, acquired by parent company Acromas Holdings, which also owns Saga Holidays, in 2009, and a decision to focus core parts of the business. Acromas' motor sports tour operator Grandstand Motor Sports recently underwent a management buyout.

A spokesman said: "Tailor Made Travel is a very labour-intensive business and offers very bespoke holidays and service which adds a substantial amount of cost in the creation and checking of bookings. It represents a very small percentage of the group's bookings.

"The proposal is that the business shuts so we are in consultation to give staff and management the opportunity to consult on the process. Clearly if that decision is made it will not be taken lightly.

"It's a difficult conversation to have with staff and we are committed to treating people properly. It would be great for the brand to have a financially viable future."

In contrast, he described escorted tours specialist Titan Travel as a "sparkling performer" in the group.

The company said it was currently business as usual for Tailor Made Travel and that bookings would be taken as normal until May 8 and honoured and operated by the group.

The brand was direct-sell until last May when it began to court the trade. The company recruited an agency sales executive and negotiated commercial deals with independent travel agency consortia.

Since the start of the year 8% of bookings were made via the trade, equating to 40-80 travel agent bookings.

The decision to sell through agents followed the axing of sister brand Connections Worldwide. Around 20% of Connections' sales were through the trade.

 

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