Discover The World Marketing is targeting a hike in business from the UK trade following a deal to represent Las Vegas hotel chain Harrah’s.
The travel sales representation, marketing and outsourcing specialist already works in 51 countries worldwide to represent more than 60 companies including bmi, Delta, Etihad, Virgin Atlantic, Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean.
Traditionally most of its business has been outside the UK. Its UK office oversees 20 offices worldwide and more than 20 clients.
Vice-president Rob Pope said several further UK deals were in the pipeline. He added: “We have not had a strategy to build our UK sales representation arm before because we have been focused on managing the whole region we represent. We have come out of our shell and made it known more recently through existing clients that we can do UK work for them.”
Chief executive Jenny Adams said the company had already seen UK business increase over the past 12 months due to the global recession, as companies have sought to cut costs through outsourcing, and increasing awareness of its work behind trade brands.
“The recession is making people rethink their infrastructure costs and look at new solutions,” she added.
The latest deal will see it representing seven properties on the Las Vegas strip: Caesars Palace, Bally’s, Flamingo, Harrah’s, Imperial Palace, Paris, and Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. They range from budget to four-star accommodation.
A sales director is being appointed to increase bookings out of the UK, most of which come through the trade, and target gaps in the market. Already the UK is the chain’s third largest market behind the US and Canada and business is expected to increase as a result of British Airways’ new flight to Las Vegas, launching in October.
Adams said the company will look at opportunities to increase sales through all channels, including online. “We want to work with all channels, whether it’s tour operators, wholesalers or multiples in the leisure or meetings and incentive market,” she said.
The company is putting together a training pack with information on the chain’s different prices and amenities and plans to roll out educationals and competitions to travel agents.
Previously the hotel chain marketed itself. It already has agreements in place with tour operators such as Virgin Holidays and online travel agents. “They had agreements with operators on the ground but needed year-round support on the ground,” added Adams.