Sister hotel brands Sani Resort and Ikos Resorts have announced two new appointments as part of a strategy to work closer with the trade.

Andrea Keeble, previously of Kerzner International, has been appointed sales and marketing manager, while Phil Shipman, formerly of G Touring, has joined as business development manager.

They join the hotelier’s first UK office, headed up by Lee Barker, as the brands look to “penetrate the travel agent community”.

Barker previously told Travel Weekly that he saw luxury agents as a big opportunity for potential growth.

“I want to build a knowledge and understanding among agents about our product,” he said. “I see a big opportunity with luxury agents – those offering a concierge style service, who have an affluent clientele. The opportunity for growth is exciting.”

Posting on social media, Shipman said: “I’m so excited to be able to share with you all that today (September 14) I started my new role as trade business development manager in the UK for Ikos and Sani Resorts!

“Two stunning brands that I’m delighted to be able to represent and looking forward to getting back out and about promoting the brands.”