Flight Centre Travel Group Limited (FCTG) has agreed to acquire 100% of the shares of Olympus Tours, a leading Mexico-based destination management company (DMC) and it will be looking to close within the next 30 days.
The move significantly strengthens FCTG’s in-destination offerings in key markets such as Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica.
It is the company’s second DMC acquisition, complementing the Asia-based Buffalo Tours business.
Both acquisitions will strengthen its rapidly expanding in-destination travel experiences network, which is the company’s third core business pillar, alongside its extensive leisure and corporate travel operations.
The company’s Australian-based headquarters has publicly flagged its intention to expand in the DMC sector – through acquisitions and organic growth – as part of a longer term plan to develop a global DMC.
Dean Smith, president of FCTG, Americas, noted that: “Olympus has been a key and valued partner of ours for many years. With a global strategy of increasing in-destination experiences – and having more control in doing so – this was a well-timed move with a company that we already have an incredible working relationship with.”
Smith added: “The acquisition gives FCTG greater flexibility with customer offerings and the ability to create new and unique products that can be sold through our global distribution channels.”
From a business perspective, this gives FCTG the opportunity to capture additional margin through vertical integration.
Historically, FCTG has not captured a large share of customers’ in-destination spend. This acquisition changes all of that dramatically and increases possibilities and revenue streams notably, including the new ability to sell to other travel companies and providing DMC services to tour groups.
FCTG also announced the acquisition of Bespoke Hospitality Management Asia (BHMA), an emerging Thailand-based regional operator of design and lifestyle leisure hotels and resorts.
The acquisition marks FCTG’s first investment in the hotel management sector.
Managing director Graham Turner said of the acquisition, “This is a logical first step into hotel management and will deliver numerous benefits. Through BHMA, we will gain access to a hotel operating platform that is scalable globally.”
Turner went on to explain this business has been growing steadily since inception and is now taking on larger properties, which means it is aligned with FCTG’s strategic aims. The overarching expertise, in terms of people and processes, can be tapped into to expand FCTG’s hotel management operations in Asia and into other key regions, including Australia, the South Pacific, Europe and the Americas.