Global travel firm Kuoni Travel
Holdings, based in Zurich, Switzerland, is expanding its holdings
in the meetings, incentives and events industry with new start-ups
and acquisitions in the United States and abroad.
Last month, the company acquired Desert
Adventures Tourism of Dubai, one of the largest destination
management companies in the region, covering Bahrain, Oman, Qatar
and the United Arab Emirates, in addition to Dubai.
Earlier in the year, Kuoni opened
destination management companies in Helsinki, Finland; Innsbruck,
Austria; Milan, Italy; and Windhoek, Namibia, and acquired
Conference & Touring, one of Germany’s largest DMCs, with
offices in Berlin, Cologne, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich, giving
Kuoni DMCs in more than 30 countries around the world.
These expansions and acquisitions will
make Kuoni one of the largest DMCs worldwide. The development
follows the recent expansion of other large global DMCs, including
Allied Europe (which acquired PRA Destination Management) and
Ovation Global DMC (created by a merger of MCI Group and Ovation
Last fall, Kuoni launched its first
U.S.-based venture on the meetings, incentives and destination
management side of travel, Kuoni Events in St. Louis. The new firm
will offer a variety of services including live event management.
According to Pat Schaumann, CMP, CSEP, DMCP and vice president of
Kuoni Events, Kuoni has another event company in the United Kingdom
and recently opened one in Geneva.
Schaumann added that the company plans
to open a Kuoni Events arm in Germany as well as acquire more
U.S.-based holdings, including DMCs and production firms, by the
end of this year.