Pirelli selects Carlson Wagonlit

Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) has been chosen by the Pirelli Group, one of Italy’s largest industrial enterprises, to manage its business travel.
Pirelli was created 135 years ago. This multinational Group is active in more than 160 countries today and runs its business in the tire industry, real estate, second-generation photonics and the environment. The group has nearly 30 thousand employees.

Pirelli chose CWT for its best-in-class program optimization services and solutions, its online booking tools and its traveler tracking system that enables organizations to better manage risk in the event of an emergency.

In keeping with its strategy to outsource its travel management activities, Pirelli will sell the assets of its travel agency Polo Viaggi S.r.l. to Carlson Wagonlit Italia, effective October 1, 2007.  Polo Viaggi, which is specialized in corporate and incentive travel, as well as leisure travel, has been operating in Milan for 20 years. The total sales volume of CWT Italia is expected to exceed €600 million in 2008 with the integration of Polo Viaggi.

Commenting on the agreement, Roberto Bacchi, managing director, Carlson Wagonlit Italia, said, “The Pirelli Group’s decision to entrust CWT with the management of its business travel brings two industry leaders together and reflects the effectiveness and added value of CWT services and solutions. CWT will also benefit from the vast experience and professional skills the Polo Viaggi staff has gained by servicing Pirelli and other Italian clients.”

The acquisition of the assets of Polo Viaggi by CWT follows the acquisition of Navigant International in the United States in August 2006 and Preferred Travel, another U.S. company, in August of this year. In July, CWT became the majority shareholder of its Indian joint venture when its ownership stake increased from 50 to 76 percent. According to Mr. Bacchi, “The acquisition of the assets of Polo Viaggi highlights the significance of the Italian market to CWT and reinforces our leadership in Italy.”