Thomas Cook India has signed an agreement with dnata Travel to take over the latter’s corporate travel business portfolio and serve its existing clients as the travel management company closes its operations in India.
As per the agreement, there will be no transfer of assets, liabilities or manpower from dnata Travel to Thomas Cook India, with the latter only acting as an alternative service provider.
Speaking to TTG Asia, Thomas Cook India CEO & executive director, Mahesh Iyer, said: “dnata Travel wanted a stable partner who can act as a ‘safe house’ for their corporate clients with whom they have a long-term relationship… So, effectively it is going to be a migration of all the existing contracts of dnata Travel to Thomas Cook India. There was no financial commitment from either party for this transaction.”
The transition is expected to be completed in the next few weeks. The agreement was concluded after an extensive process of evaluation by dnata Travel.
dnata Travel regional vice president, Rashid Al Awadhi, said: “Whilst we are disappointed to be exiting the corporate market in India, it has always been our intention to provide our valued customers with an alternative option. We are delighted that we can now offer customers the option of a seamless transition to Thomas Cook.”
Iyer declined to divulge the size of dnata’s existing corporate client base, but said that he expects a slow recovery of corporate travel business in India, beginning with domestic markets.
He added: “The fact that we are already dealing with a lot of corporates and have the required infrastructure support puts us in good stead to serve dnata’s clients. We have started to see early green shots in corporate travel and expect to witness some recovery from the international side too beginning 4Q2020. I also expect more consolidation happening in the corporate travel business in India.”