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Commercial Director

Posted 18 May by Travel Counsellors Easy Apply Ended

Travel Counsellors are an award-winning, travel business that places people at the heart of everything we do. We have 1,750 home-based Travel Counsellor Franchisees and 350 support staff based from our head office located near the Trafford Centre in Manchester and internationally in our 6 satellite offices. With sales of £500m plus per annum and ambitions to be a £1bn digitally enabled business.

The Company sets itself apart by recruiting the best travel advisers, building personal relationships with customers and delivering the highest level of personal service and care. We’re a world class, bespoke business and one of the most fundamental factors of our business is that we’re consistent in offering an authentic and tailor-made service where our Travel Counsellors create "one off" itineraries that cannot be found off the shelf.

Founded 23 years ago, our business model is tried and tested, based on relationships, retention and referral. It’s this approach that makes us more than a little different from the rest.

The business is growing quickly and has a huge opportunity for further growth by executing its clear strategy globally (referred to as RRP), focusing on:

  1. Recruiting more franchisees globally;
  2. Leveraging the opportunities to increase new business from Referrals and drive up more Re-Book business, specifically from first time bookers; and
  3. Driving sales through the Company’s in-house booking system Phenix and specifically it’s directly contracted product.

The Position

Reporting to and working closely with the Managing Director/CCO we’re looking for a Head of Commercial who has strong experience of leading commercial teams. The Head of Commercial will ensure that we identify commercially sound procurement strategies that leverage scale and maximise opportunities across the world, as the company goes through its next stage of growth.

This is a truly global role which requires a strong leader to inspire and develop the commercial team and manage all commercial activities to ensure profitable business growth is accelerated, KPIs are achieved and that commercial success is achieved in-line with business objectives. A key role that forms an essential link and solidifies relationships between Travel Counsellors and our local and international suppliers whilst securing beneficial and achievable commercial terms, override targets and agreed levels of marketing contributions.


  • Pro-actively leading and driving the Commercial strategy of the business, alongside the MD/CCO
  • Ensuring the business provides the very best product and leading commercial terms with supplier partners to Travel Counsellors (TCs) globally, leveraging global buying power to enable TCs to be competitive in their market
  • Leading and supervising Commercial negotiations and developing the Commercial contracting strategy for each product stream, including wholesalers, airlines, cruise lines and tour operators (among others)
  • Conducting market research and analysis and producing business plans/recommendations to ensure that all business development opportunities (new products, services and markets) are optimised.
  • Developing a programme of recommended and exclusive added value product, to enable TCs to make informed product decisions for customers and at competitive prices.
  • Building close relationships with preferred suppliers and partners, forming strategic partnerships and leveraging those relationships
  • Data analysis and reporting to the business, identifying opportunities of innovation, price, margin improvement, revenue growth and market share
  • Working closely with the Sales and Marketing to teams to drive the Commercial strategy with clear focus upon key campaigns and commercial opportunities to improve ROI.
  • Development, motivation and performance of Commercial team members both in the UK and globally
  • Driving Commercial IT Development, ensuring that the industry-leading technology system meets the Commercial needs of the business
  • Understanding our key customers (customer segments)/target audience to ensure their needs are being met and that their business is retained.
  • Presenting the commercial agenda to internal and external personnel
  • Representing the company externally e.g. at networking events, conferences and exhibitions
  • Supporting development of improved MI, tools, ways of working and training programmes
  • Communicate with Global Sales Director to focus sales teams on key campaigns, commercial targets and opportunities
  • To have a clear understanding of what marketing activity is providing the best ROI

Role requirements

  • MCIPS and degree qualified (ideally in an area relevant to the role)
  • You will have proven multi-functional leadership experience and a demonstrable track record gained within a similar position, at a similar level
  • Proven track record in Procurement within Travel / Retail / FMCG or Professional Services industries with an understanding of yield management and pricing strategies
  • Ideally experience of international markets and operating on a Global basis
  • Must have a can-do attitude, be a self-starter and fully immerse themselves across all the commercial elements of a business, whether that be setting the financial budget, forecasting, pricing & supply strategies, negotiation, supplier relationship management or developing new initiatives to drive growth
  • Ability to weigh up the commercial, financial, regulatory and legal risks of commercial deals
  • Internationally focussed, understanding the opportunities and challenges that this brings and understanding how to navigate these to achieve success.
  • Highly analytical, with a methodical approach to problem solving
  • Have an entrepreneurial ability to develop new products and exploit growth opportunities
  • Prepared to travel as part of the role

Desirable requirements

  • An understanding of tour operating is an advantage
  • Supplier relations in travel
  • Additional languages

Required skills

  • Buying
  • Negotiations
  • Procurement
  • Profitable
  • Relationship Management

Reference: 34531288

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