Virgin Travelstore takes on marketing chief

Virgin Travelstore, the new travel retail arm of the Virgin Group, has appointed Katie Handley as its marketing director.

Handley has been working at Virgin Travelstore as a consultant during its development stage, and has also worked at American Express and Virgin Atlantic, where she was in charge of the airline’s global frequent-flyer programme.

In June Virgin Travelstore appointed Duckworth Finn Grubb Waters to handle its advertising. Handley will continue to manage the relationship.

At the same time, Virgin Travelstore – which launches to the public next week – has appointed Carol Smallman as its commercial director. Prior to joining Virgin, Smallman worked at the TV Travelshop in the same position. At Virgin Travelstore Smallman will head the commercial team and manage commercial relationships with travel suppliers and relevant channel providers.

Both Handley and Smallman report to Virgin Travelstore’s managing director Ed Sims. Sims joined in June from Airtours Holidays, where he was sales, marketing and development director.

Virgin Travelstore launches to the public next week, selling package holidays and independent travel, through Virgin’s V Shops – as well as through Digital TV, Teletext and the Internet.

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