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Kuoni to launch new brand this year

The tour operator says it can fill the gap between package and tailor-made holidays.

Swedish-owned tour operator Kuoni says it will launch a new brand this summer aimed at filling the gap between packages and tailor-made holidays.

The as-yet unnamed brand will be officially launched at the end of June and will be aimed at offering a modular approach to packaging online.

“We have a name, we have a plan, it will be happening in the next four to five months,” Derek Jones, chief executive of the UK branch of Kuoni owner DER Touristik assured to the British travel news site TTG.

He added that the new brand – the first from Kuoni in a decade – would be “an online-first proposition”.

“We believe there is a space beyond the fixed itinerary and the full tailor-made. We believe we can deliver something into that space that doesn’t exist.”

Tech with agents
Kuoni and other operators have tried the modular approach unsuccessfully in the past, Jones admitted, but technology now allows more components to be assembled online.

“We think there is a way of creating an awful lot of options in front of customers with a base itinerary,” he said.

But this would not detract from the role of agents, Jones said: “We do not see it touching the real value-add in store.”

Kuoni will open its 50th store in the UK in the next few weeks, which Jones says marks the end of its retail ambitions. “We are pretty much where we want to be. We are within 20 to 30 miles of all our customers. That gives us a real solid base.”

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