Thomson revamp sparks hunt for marketing chief

Thomson, the country’s biggest tour operator, is looking for a new marketing director following a restructure.

The vacancy has arisen as a result of the promotion of Thomson Tour Operations former marketing director Richard Bowden-Doyle from deputy managing director to managing director of the company. In his role as deputy managing director he retained responsibility for marketing.

Bowden-Doyle will replace Charles Newbold, who is moving up to become chairman of the tour operation.

The role of chairman did not previously exist, though it was essentially filled by Thomson Travel Group chairman Paul Brett, to whom both men now report.

The changes follow a restructure last autumn which saw the tour operator splitting into two divisions: Bowden-Doyle was appointed to head the beach holidays business, while commercial director Steve Garley was made head of the specialist holiday programme.

Thomson, along with Airtours, is still awaiting the outcome of the Monopolies & Mergers Commission inquiry into alleged anti-competitive practices. Between them, the two companies control half the 7bn overseas package holiday market in the UK. The referral followed a long investigation by the Office of Fair Trading into “vertical integration”, whereby travel companies own their own tour operators, travel agencies and airlines.

The reports are not expected for some months.

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