Former Travel Weekly Group chief executive Simon Ferguson has been named the new UK and Ireland regional director of global distribution system Travelport.
The Travolution founder starts in the new role on September 12. He succeeds Jerome Moisan, who announced his departure in April and will officially leave the post on September 19.
Ferguson joined online deals publisher Travelzoo in July to head up its UK destinations and network business two years after leading the management buy-out of Travel Weekly from Reed Business Information.
He said the chance to join Travelport, the UK’s leading GDS in terms of market share, was an opportunity that was too good to turn down. He will be based in Travelport’s Langley head office.
“Travelport is a dynamic organisation, and one which has played a pivotal role in shaping the travel distribution landscape,” Ferguson said.
“It is fantastic to be joining at a time when Travelport is reinforcing its leadership position in the UK and Ireland and launching some very innovative and leading-edge technology.”
Jason Clarke, president and managing director, Europe and Brazil for Travelport added: “Simon is a highly experienced general manager with an impressive track record in achieving the goals he sets his sights on,”
“I am certain that with his extensive knowledge of the UK travel industry and travel technology sector, combined with his business acumen and customer-centric approach, Simon will be able to take the Travelport business from strength to strength in this region.
“We are delighted to have been able to recruit such a high calibre successor to this important role,” added Clarke.
Ferguson joins Travelport at an interesting time for all the GDSs with legal battles raging in the US between American Airlines over its move to push its own Direct Connect system.
The global travel distribution model is also expected to be challenged by the recent acquisition of software firm ITA by Google. The firm powers many of the large US online travel agencies.