Amadeus snaffled 8,400 American travel agencies!
By purchasing Vacation.com, the booking system settled in Sophia Antipolis bets on traditional agencies for the finalization of travel sales
A big American purchase for Amadeus, the international booking and distribution computerized system for travels: at the same time, the group bought a network of 8,400 travel agencies in the United States and in Canada. Amadeus, whose development and marketing center is settled in Sophia Antipolis (more than 1,300 people), announced on Monday, 30 the purchase of Vacation.com, the biggest American entertainment travel sale consortium.Beyond the spectacular thing, a strategyThe purchase cost more than 80 million dollars in cash (57 million dollars in cash and 27,7 million dollar of Vacation.com debt payment) and above all 1.818.000 Amadeus A Class stocks (economic rights). But beyond the spectacular purchase, what interests most is the strategic line.The today big debate in travel distribution is around a worry question: Will traditional travel agencies disappear in front of internet distributors? The question focuses on one point: Will the big booking system (Amadeus, Sabre, Galileo) distribute directly their travels to the final client or will they continue to need travel agencies?The leader of the group: the US president of AmadeusAmadeus, by purchasing a big network which even if it uses the Internet remains traditional, brings an answer. The group bets on a strategy: the Internet for information, travel agencies to finalize sales. Thus, Vacation.com developed a web site to help its clients chose a destination, a travel, a cruise, to rent a car…But sales are always finalized by a travel agency, member of the group.Vice-president of Amadeus, David V. Jones, noticed in a release: 'We are redefining our travel distribution activity and we bet on traditional travel agencies. The purchase will imply an important development of the range of services products Amadeus offers to entertainment travel agencies.For its strategy, Amadeus already nominated the president of the group in the United States, Tony McKinnon, CEO of Vacation.com.