Job losses forecast in Cosmos/Avro merger

Job losses forecast in Cosmos/Avro merger

COSMOS and its troubled sister company Avro are likely to make redundancies following their relocation to new offices in the London area.

Back-office functions including accounting, technology and human resources will merge as part of the relocation which will result in job losses from both operations. It will save parent company Globus £2m.

The plans emerged as Avro suffered another blow with the resignation of managing director Roy Woodward, who left for personal reasons. He has been replaced by Cosmos managing director Nigel Wright.

Avro chairman Fabio Mantegazza said Woodward’s departure was amicable.

Woodward’s decision caps a turbulent four months for the flight-only specialist. It axed 10 jobs in April following the merger of its sales, marketing and administration departments and then lost the trust of agents by announcing it was cutting commission before abruptly reversing the decision (Travel Weekly June 21).

Wright, who formerly ran Sunworld’s Skybargains seat-only operation, said only back-office departments would be merged in the latest streamlining but warned jobs could go.

“Sales, marketing and commercial functions will be kept totally separate. Cosmos and Avro are two separate businesses which appeal to different agents,” he said. “But it makes commercial sense to integrate certain aspects of the business. Unfortunately, I do expect some redundancies but its too early to say how many. Staff are aware of the situation.”

Consultants are currently searching for new premises in the London area with Wright aiming to relocate by Christmas. Avro is currently based in Wimbledon and Cosmos in Bromley.

Wright admitted his first task as Avro boss was to rebuild relationships with agents following the commission debacle.

“That was handled appallingly and could have had repercussions for Cosmos,” he said. “Fortunately agents seemed to give us the benefit of the doubt and have continued to support us. I now aim to strengthen the sales and marketing teams at both operations to forge closer relationships with the trade.”

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