NEW YORK CITY-Michael Gaebler, chairman/CEO of AVIAREPS, a Germany-based global airline and tourism sales and marketing representative, met with Travel Agent during his recent trip to Manhattan and announced his company's plans for expansion, which include the opening of a third U.S. office, most likely in Los Angeles, by March 2008 and taking on two additional high-profile destinations as clients, also in 2008. AVIAREPS, which has 33 subsidiaries and more than 400 employees, has acquired 12 companies since its inception in 1994 and lately has been averaging two new acquisitions per year. Its two existing U.S. offices are in Miami and New York City. Recently, AVIAREPS invested in Marketing Garden Ltd., Asia's largest tourism marketing company, which led to an agreement with NYC & Company, the tourism marketing organization for New York City, to handle all of its destination marketing and public relations activities in China and Korea (AVIAREPS already handles NYC & Company's European marketing).
Another significant recent development was the Finnish Tourist Board's decision to outsource its marketing to AVIAREPS. Gaebler says that this marks the growing trend in the tourism industry of outsourcing/privatization of sales and marketing, which began in the 1990s with U.S. airlines looking to become more cost effective. AVIAREPS offers a guarantee of a 30 percent cost savings and a 30 increase in revenue over two years to its airline clients, which include Air Namibia, Aer Lingus, L'Avion and Aerosur. Visit [http://www.aviareps.com]. (DB)