Former Attraction World chief operating officer Tony Seaman is to join Tripashore as chief commercial officer.

Seaman, who starts next week, has also become a “substantial” investor in the trade-only cruise excursions specialist, which launched in November last year.

His appointment to the newly-created role comes two months after his departure from Attraction World, which he remains a shareholder in, as the company looks to grow its trade business.

Seaman said: “I got to the point where I could not take Attraction World any further and I wanted a new challenge. It was all amicable.”

Attraction World dropped its cruise programme 18 months ago.

Seaman, who reports into joint founder Lee Strongitharm, said he was attracted to Tripashore because of its “smarter” and non conventional approach of working with agents, mainly cruise specialists.

He remained tight-lipped on the exact details of the way the company works with the trade, but added: “Tripashore has a different approach to everyone else and everyone in the senior management team used to work for a cruise line so their local knowledge is phenomenal.

“The company offers small, boutique trips and works a lot smarter with travel partners and very closely with the cruise specialists. By being very smart with the agents we can be more specific and help agents to sell it. It’s a completely different way of working with agents.”

Seaman said there was a “massive opportunity” for growth in the cruise excursions sector but the key was getting the trade on side. Commission paid to agents varies on the amount of business they do with the company.

He said: “Cruise excursions are basically under-marketed by the trade. Agents are currently losing out on a huge amount of revenue by not selling these excursions.

“The first thing is to get agents to acknowledge the opportunity and find a way to help them sell it that takes the pain away and doesn’t rely on the person on the counter to do it all.”

The company will also be focused on increasing its trade distribution, including in new markets such as the US. It already has offices in New Zealand and Australia.

“There is no reason why we couldn’t be doing £30 million turnover out of the UK quite easily within 18 months and it could be a lot more than that,” said Seaman.