Australian travel company Flight Centre Travel Group on Thursday agreed to acquire a 100% stake in Olympus Tours, a Mexico-based ground operator.
The company also has acquired Bespoke Hospitality Management Asia (BHMA), a Thailand-based operator of design and lifestyle hotels and resorts. The acquisition is Flight Centre's first investment in the hotel sector.
BHMA operates 14 properties in Thailand and has another 19 signed properties under development in Thailand and Vietnam.
The Olympus move is part of Flight Centre's strategy to strengthen its foothold in key markets such as Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica, as well as to continue expansion in destination management. Flight Centre ultimately aims to form a global destination management company.
The Olympus deal follows Flight Centre's recent acquisition of Asia-based ground operator Buffalo Tours. Buffalo Tours and Olympus Tours together generate approximately $100 million in annual revenue. Their services include transfers, excursions and day trips, arrangements for meetings and incentive groups, and land arrangements for cruises and other tour groups.
Olympus has been a Flight Centre partner for many years. The acquisition is expected to close within the next 30 days.
Historically, Flight Centre has not captured a large share of customers' in-destination spending, but "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 provide destination management company services to tour groups," Flight Centre said.
The company would like to expand its destination-management presence into mainland USA, Hawaii, the Caribbean and Central and South America.
Flight Centre is a major player in retail leisure travel and corporate travel management. Its brands include travel agency chain Liberty Travel, wholesaler Gogo Vacations and corporate agency FCM Travel Solutions.