The Co-operative Travel Consortium has welcomed 11 new members this year and “is expecting to see 30% growth in 2016”.
The Midcounties consortium, comprising independent retailers affiliated to the group, now has 37 members, up from 31 in 2014.
The most high-profile member to join this year was Vertical Group’s homeworking agency Your Holiday Booking, which announced in October it was leaving Freedom Travel Group. Consortium head Alison Holmes said sister brands Miss Ellies, Your Holiday Booking and Your Hotel
Integration were now its “biggest member”, with total sales in excess of £25 million.
The consortium made sales of £59 million in 2014. So far this year it has turned over £75 million.
Holmes said: “With the new members, this will deliver around a 30% increase in turnover for next year and with the current interest that we have in the consortium, we expect to achieve £130 million turnover in 2016-17.”
Holmes said she was “actively recruiting” new members and was in talks with other agents in different consortia at the moment.
“We want to continue to grow but at the appropriate pace. We’re after quality not quantity,” she said.
“There’s still work to be done on our website and, when it’s updated, I hope it will attract new members.”
In the past year the consortium has set up a steering group, changed its logo and added “Travel” to its name. Holmes pledged to continue to deliver the “best service” and to update tools for members in the coming year.
According to a survey carried out with half of members, 80% were said to be “extremely satisfied” with the consortium.
In January, Holmes will spend a day a week in a member’s agency to “better understand their challenges”.
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