Choice Hotels signs marketer

Choice Hotels Europe has appointed Vicky La Trobe to the new position of marketing director for Europe.

La Trobe joins the company from rival hotel chain Millennium Copthorne, where she was director of marketing for Europe, the Middle East and Africa with global responsibility for brand standards.

She has worked for Choice Hotels before, as marketing services director. Her new responsibilities include developing a UK and European marketing strategy, to include branding and partnerships.

La Trobe’s appointment follows the departure of sales and marketing director Philip Moston, who left to join Corus & Regal Hotels last July (MW July 18, 2002). Sales and marketing responsibilities have now been split – Choice appointed David Gow-Smith as sales director last year.

Choice Hotels Europe owns or franchises more than 500 properties in the UK and Europe. Its brands include Clarion, Sleep, Comfort and Quality. The company used Senior King as its lead marketing agency until last July, but has since been using agencies on a project basis. A spokeswoman says there are no immediate plans to change this strategy.

In February, Choice announced that it is to invest £3m in upgrading 30 of its UK properties this year. Its results for 2002 showed a reduction in pre-tax losses to £2.3 m, down from £9.4m in 2001. Turnover fell by 7.7 per cent, to £82.2m.

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