Breaking Travel News

Final day of WTM graced by senior business leaders and politicians

Final day of WTM graced by senior business leaders and politicians

World Travel Market 2013, the leading global event for the travel industry, has a high profile line up of senior business leaders and politicians for its final day (Thursday 7 November).

The WTM Knowledge Theatre, situated on the exhibition floor at GV750, will host three back-to-back sessions starting with London Deputy Mayor for Business and Enterprise Kit Malthouse at 11am.

In July, Malthouse was appointed as Chairman of London & Partners, the London Mayor’s promotional body for the capital. Malthouse’s speech will address the opportunities and threats for London tourism following on from the Olympics and his vision for the capital as a tourism hotspot.

Malthouse is followed at 11.45am by former no-frills airline Go Fly founder and CEO Barbara Cassani. Cassani launched Go Fly for British Airways in 1998 and ran the airline until it was sold to easyJet in 2001, a move which she opposed after steering the airline to profitability in just two years.

In June 2003 Cassani was appointed to chair London’s bid to host the 2012 Summer Olympics, leading the bid through the first stage of the process before handing over to Lord Sebastian Coe. She continued under Coe in the role of Vice Chair.


Cassani remained in the travel industry with board roles at Jurys Inns, Air Berlin and Vueling Airlines. Cassani will tell delegates about her experiences in the travel industry and her expectations for the future.

The final session in the WTM Knowledge Theatre is an aviation panel debate titled - Airlines Adapting Their Business Models.

BMI CEO Cathal O’Connell and Air Baltic Vice President of Communication Janis Vanags will discuss the importance of innovation in a consolidating sector. They will look at best practice within the aviation sector in a number of areas including social media.

The session, chaired WTM Aviation expert John Strickland, takes place at 12.30pm.

Reed Travel Exhibitions, Senior Director, World Travel Market Simon Press said: “I am delighted with our comprehensive and wide ranging conference programme in the new WTM Knowledge Theatre on the final day of the event.

“It is very rare to be able to hear form such senior business leaders as Barbara Cassani and Cathal O’Connell and a politician such as Deputy London Mayor Kit Malthouse.