The head of the global consumer division of telecoms company Telefonica is to take over as chief commercial officer at Travelport.
Stephen Shurrock replaces Kurt Ekert, who is leaving the business at the end of the year as the position relocates to the UK.
Shurrock takes up his role at Travelport on January 4, 2016, leading its teams in air, agency, hospitality and digital media worldwide as well as having responsibility for customer engagement, product strategy, marketing and market research.
President and chief executive, Gordon Wilson, said: “Stephen is a highly talented and customer-centric leader with an impressive global track record of delivering commercial results.
“In particular, he has successfully led the businesses he has been involved in through considerable positive commercial change as the telecommunications industry has pivoted a number of times in terms of its value and service proposition.
“As Travelport continues in its mission to redefine travel commerce, which includes further evolving our value proposition, moving into new digital services, and offering a more holistic set of IT driven solutions to our customers, Stephen will bring a new and accretive dimension to our future business growth.”
He added: “I would also like to thank Kurt for his tremendous service and significant contribution to Travelport over a number of years.
“His tenure as chief commercial officer has seen the company through a critical initial period of transformation. He has been a tireless champion of our business to our client base, and he leaves us in a good position from which to build further our commercial operations.”
Shurrock, whose roles at Telefonica included chief executive of O2 Ireland and chief executive of Telefonica’s new digital business and innovation division, added: “At a time when Travelport is strengthening its portfolio of products and services, I believe there is a great opportunity to bring approaches and strategic thinking from related industries and apply them to airline merchandising, hotel distribution, mobile travel commerce and B2B payments.
He continues to be a non-executive director for Travelodge UK