Travo@10: Cheapflights’ key staff profiles

Travo@10: Cheapflights’ key staff profiles

Name: Sarah Hanan
Role: Commercial Director

Sarah’s career in the travel industry started in 1998, and from early beginnings as a Sales Consultant for STA Travel in both London and Auckland, she is now Commercial Director for Cheapflights.

Sarah started with the business to represent Cheap Accommodation, the hotel comparison site but moved across to flights when this part of the business was sold and has progressed within the company ever since.

Her responsibilities as Commercial Director are to ensure that the business exceeds its revenue targets globally across its portfolio of products, she is tasked with spotting opportunities worldwide and ultimately setting strategy to replicate the success in the UK and USA in new and growing markets.

Sarah was also instrumental in setting up Cheapflights’ move into deals publishing and its subsequent success, which puts Cheapflights in the unique market position it has today. She credits the excellent team around her as key in the recent successes of the business.

When travelling for pleasure, Sarah loves India, the Caribbean and the UK’s Lake District. Her digital radio, a major source of news and cricket scores, is never far from her side.

Name: Kate Irwin
Role: Commercial Manager

Kate has worked within commercial teams in the travel industry for 10 years. From a Sales Executive role at TTG, and via stints at Archant, CMPI and Wilmington publishing houses, Kate joined Cheapflights five years ago.

Starting as a Sales Executive, Kate has worked in both the UK and USA (Boston) commercial teams, working her way up to Commercial Manager.

Her role encompasses revenue optimisation and analysis of new markets and products for their viability. Kate is responsible for managing commercial enterprises and developing bespoke partnerships, such as Cheapflights’ relationship with CarTrawler, Hotels Combined and Revolut.

Kate’s top three travel destinations are India, Ibiza and Australia. Her most valued tech gadget is the Urban Revolt, a portable charger that has become invaluable when travelling.

Name: Ricky Wilkes
Role: Head of Sales UK & Emerging Markets

Ricky, currently Head of Sales UK & Emerging Markets, has served several stints at TTG during his career, starting back in 2007 as an Account Manager selling adverting space and culminating in a role as Luxury Sales Manager.

His career trajectory has also seen him head up the sales division for Victor, an on-demand private jet charter service, and setting up a business specialising in bespoke corporate photography.

In October 2014, he made what he calls “the single greatest decision of his life” by joining Cheapflights at a time of considerable energy, growth and pace.

Ricky oversees both the UK and new markets, including South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, which were growing organically but are now being targeted with the tactics which have proved successful in the UK and USA.

Under Ricky’s watch, the deals publishing division of Cheapflights saw 25% growth year-on-year despite tough market conditions.

Ricky’s favourite travel destinations are Cornwall, Franschhoek near Cape Town and the Atacama Desert in Chile. When not working or travelling, Ricky is immersing himself in the world of app development.

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