Travelport has inked a distributor agreement with Satguru Travel & Tourism, Africa’s largest travel company outside of South Africa, which will see the GDS provider grow its African network from 27 to 41 countries and its existing GDS operations in a further two.
Through this 16 country distributor deal, the largest of its kind ever signed by Travelport, the company will also offer its customers a number of Satguru’s industry leading e-commerce applications.
The strategic partnership between the two companies, which forms part of Travelport’s ongoing strategy to invest and grow in the fast growing African continent, takes immediate effect.
Last year flight bookings made through the GDS channel in Africa increased by 7.7%. This trend looks set to continue as economists predict that the average GDP across the continent will increase by 4.7% in 2012 and 5.7% in 2013.
Satguru, which is headquartered in the UAE, is the largest African travel company outside of South Africa. Operating in 27 African countries, it also runs a number of operations outside of Africa including in Afghanistan, India, the UAE and Yemen.
Under the agreement Satguru will set up operations and run the National Distributor Centres for Travelport in Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Southern Sudan and Togo.
In the countries where Satguru is not the Travelport distributor, Travelport has signed a subscriber agreement that include 11 African countries plus Afghanistan, India, the UAE and Yemen.”
Mark Meehan, managing director for Travelport in Africa, said the deal with Satguru “represents a giant leap forward in our African ambitions.”
Anil Chandirani, Satguru’s managing director said his company’s partnership withTravelport would allow them to distribute the Galileo platform to a very extensive travel agency community in Africa.