8 December 2022
CTM Takes Corporate Host Agency Model to International Markets
Corporate Travel Management (CTM)’s host agency business, 1000 Mile Travel Group, is launching into the US market and expanding operations in the UK in response to strong SME travel management demand.
1000 Mile Travel Group was acquired by CTM in July 2022. The strategic acquisition presents CTM with an exciting opportunity to leverage both a growing cohort of independent travel advisors and increasing demands for specialist travel management solutions by SMEs – a traditionally unmanaged segment in corporate travel.
Founded in Australia in 2015, 1000 Mile Travel Group is a highly successful network of experienced independent travel advisors offering high-touch, flexible travel management services to small businesses. The corporate host agency business model, designed specifically to meet the needs of independent corporate travel agents, supports a growing workforce of experienced travel advisors seeking to manage their own client portfolio on their own terms and from anywhere they want.
CTM Founder and Managing Director, Jamie Pherous, said the acquisition of 1000 Mile Travel Group provides an exciting opportunity to take the successful corporate host agency model into markets which have traditionally focused only on leisure travel. “1000 Mile Travel Group delivers a unique and flexible travel management model for servicing small and growing businesses while offering all the benefits of CTM’s global buying power and enterprise-grade travel technology, including our proprietary online booking tool, Lightning.”
Pherous cites an unprecedented demand for travel management services in the unmanaged SME segment resulting of the more complex travel environment and the ongoing risk of travel disruptions. “Small businesses are finding increased value in the expertise, support and negotiated deals available through CTM’s managed travel programs,” said Pherous. “However, they require a unique style of servicing and engagement due to their more flexible operational and support needs. The independent corporate travel advisor fits those needs perfectly.”
1000 Mile Travel Group’s host agency solution has seen significant growth in its corporate travel advisor network, a trend which has accelerated in the post-COVID travel environment. The company is now exporting its corporate host agency model to the US and expanding its focus in the UK market to capitalize on demand and opportunity.
1000 Mile Travel Group Founders and co-CEOs, Nicola Veltman and Ben Ross, said the host agency’s point of difference is its first-hand experience, the strength of its travel advisor network, and the backing of CTM which delivers global buying power, proprietary technology and scale to its independent travel advisors and their customers.
“What makes 1000 Mile Travel Group different to other host agencies is that we’ve ‘walked the talk’ – we were once travel advisors working for the mega TMCs, and we took the step to set up our own independent travel business to achieve a better lifestyle,” says Veltman. “We were the business’s first independent advisors. It wasn’t easy, and we quickly found that there’s a lack of dedicated corporate independent network models that truly understand the unique needs of business travel. So, we built our own model, and we’ve developed and refined a unique ‘business blueprint’ that sets our agents up for success.”
Veltman explains that the 1000 MTG leadership team truly understands the challenges its independent travel advisors may face because they’ve also experienced and overcome them, and they’ve invested in building critical partnerships and technology solutions needed to make running an independent corporate travel business a success. “As a result, our network has grown from strength to strength in a very short time, and many of our agents are earning enviable six-figure salaries working a third of their portfolio, from wherever and whenever it suits them.”
CEOs Veltman and Ross have relocated to Denver, Colorado, to focus on establishing the brand in North America as well as integrating CTM’s leisure host agency, MTravel, into the 1000 Mile Travel Group business.
“By bringing our incredible MTravel team and travel advisor network into the 1000 Mile Travel Group brand, we’re able to leverage our combined resources, expertise, tools and infrastructure for the benefits of both travel specializations, whether corporate or leisure. We’ve created a highly connected, experienced and engaged global network of more than 750+ independent travel experts across USA, Australia and the UK, who will get together at our first global conference in Hawaii in February. We’re all excited about the opportunities ahead of us with CTM’s backing.
“Whether you’re a business travel expert or vacation travel advisor, our business support, technology, and content can transform the way you work and live your life, and provide exceptional value and service to your customers along the way,” said Veltman.
Find out more about 1000 Mile Travel Group here.
About Corporate Travel Management – click here