ITG’s italktravel talks up WA debut as it aims for 100 branded outlets

Issues & Trends – April 2014

ITG’s italktravel talks up WA debut as it aims for 100 branded outlets

INDEPENDENT Travel Group has taken a significant step forward in its quest to have a national branded chain of 100 outlets within a total membership of 350 agents by the end of 2015.

ITG’s membership had climbed past 220 agencies by the end of last year and 16 branded outlets will be operating by August, the company says.

Earlier this month, three outlets in Newcastle were the first to adopt the branded italktravel option.

Now the brand is set to make its first appearance in Western Australia following the decision of Colin Rourke to convert his North Perth agency, a former Harvey World Travel outlet, to italktravel. His second agency in Narrogin is scheduled to adopt the italktravel brand in July.

In a statement announcing the development, both Rourke and ITG chief executive Tom Manwaring emphasised the exclusive territory entitlement that comes with italktravel branding.

At one time HWT franchises came with exclusive territories but under the Helloworld business model, which applies the single brand across the four chains previously branded separately as HWT, Jetset, Travelworld and Travelscene, two or more agencies in the same shopping precinct can carry the brand.

Rourke, asserting that he and his staff are all “very excited” about the business’ new direction, said: “We have our exclusive territory and we’re working with a great family company in ITG.”

Manwaring said: “Our exclusive territory agreements and bonus profit pool for franchisees is resonating extremely well across Australia, as is the high reward and low cost model upon which italktravel is based.”

Branding includes exterior and interior shop design, fit out, collateral and staff apparel. It is supported by Express Ticketing services including Express Desktop, a cloud based travel agency solution, and access to the B2C local marketing software provided by the Express Marketing Suite.

If ITG achieves its target of 350 agents by the end of 2015, they will sit alongside the 350-strong Select Travel Group giving the company a total of 700 agents.


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