After 47 years, Hong Kong-based travel management company Jardine Travel will cease operations on August 31, 2020.
A spokesperson for Jardine Travel told TTG Asia that despite its best efforts, the company faced “significant challenges in maintaining a competitive edge alongside multi-location travel agencies”.
Since July 1, 2020, Jardine’s operations has been taken over by Connexus Travel (formerly Swire Travel). Jardine has assured clients, business partners and employees that they are working towards a “smooth transition” which is expected to be completed by August 31.
Connexus Travel’s CEO Gloria Slethaug said that her company is “delighted” to take up Jardine’s travel management business, and promised that it will be a “compelling proposition” for clients. This move also demonstrates Connexus’ confidence in the market as a travel management company committed to “long-term development”.
Slethaug added that technology and digitisation have transformed the travel industry into a highly specialised business sector in recent years.
An industry veteran, who declined to be named, opined that if Jardine Travel had changed its business model earlier, it might have survived.
He elaborated: “When (Jardine Travel’s) general manager retired two years ago, her successor brought on board staff with a background in airlines, GDS, and corporate travel. However, the company remained traditional, and did not expand its distribution platform, or diversified its business for the last 15 years.”
He pointed out that Jardine could have survived if the company had upgraded their IT capabilities, enhanced tools for B2C and B2B partnerships, as well as upskill employees.