Youhotels seeks agents for Groupon/Travelzoo push

Youhotels.com, the trade brand of Youtravel.com, is looking for travel agents to work with it on exploiting flash sale and deals sites like Groupon and Travelzoo.


The firm, which has recently undergone a management restructure, has started experimenting with new ways of getting deals to market.


Youtravel UK managing director Matt Cheevers, who was promoted to the new post following the departure of group managing director Graham Nichols, said:


“We want to be quicker to react to changes in the marketplace. Customers are becoming more promotion led.


“We did our first Groupon deal with an agent two weeks ago and we need to make sure we’re even more responsive to help agents offer the best deals.”


Youtravel announced on Thursday that Nichols was leaving the business. The news followed the departure of sales and marketing director Paul Riches, announced last month.


Nichols will be replaced by David Howell, former lastminute.com group finance director. Cheevers said he had already started a total review of how Youhotels works with agents.


“We have already been out to six or seven agents. We want to understand why there have been problems in the past and learn what they want from bed bank partners,” he said.


The company wants to increase its profile among the trade and is recruiting for sales people.


Youtravel also said it will be targeting growth in Germany, a market in which it sees as having the most potential, before moving on to France, Spain Scandinavia and Italy.


John Kent, the firm’s founder and chief executive, said: “I worked with David Howell and Matt Cheevers at lastminute.com, which successfully launched in different markets, so I believe the team we have now has the experience necessary to develop the business outside the UK.


“A sales person has been appointed in Germany. It is the number one market we want to focus on – it has the most potential. We will then look at France, Spain, Scandinavia and Italy.”


Cheevers added: “Each market has its own dynamics and its own product requirements. We now have someone who knows the German market.”

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