Thomson to launch Net travel shops

Thomson Travel Group is launching a swathe of separately branded Internet supermarkets selling its own and competitors’ holidays direct to different niches of the market.

The first supermarket is called First Resort and launches on March 21. This will target the mass market with a range of holidays as well as related products such as cameras, sun creams and sun glasses.

First Resort appointed Gillian Wylie, from the marketing department of training company IIR, as its marketing director last month.

Wylie says she has appointed an advertising agency to promote the new brand but refuses to give further details.

She reports to Matthew Prior, general manager at First Resort.

Thomson has also created new brands Getaway and Independent Traveller, targeting the youth and ABC1 markets respectively.

It is also understood to be building on the specialist direct brands it acquired as part of its takeover of Lincoln Travel last year. These added latedeals.com and ski-deals.co.uk, the ski holidays and equipment Website, to the Thomson portfolio.

Thomson is now planning skydeals.co.uk, a new online flight booking agency.

First Resort is the first new brand to come out of the digital travel division, set up last month to develop Thomson’s interactive offering.

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