Hotels & More launches Tour Partner Group and appoints Paul Maine as Group Chief Executive Officer

Hotels & More, a leading inbound tour operator for group tours and individual travellers to the United Kingdom and Ireland, is pleased to announce the creation of a new Group Chief Executive Officer role with the appointment of Paul Maine, effective 6 September. Paul will lead the newly named Tour Partner Group, the holding company for Hotels & More, Irish Welcome Tours and Authentic Vacations. The Board also announces that Karin Urban, Managing Director of Hotels & More, will transition to Non-Executive Director of the board of Tour Partner Group with Paul assuming executive responsibilities for Hotels & More from September. 

Paul joins from STA Travel, the world’s largest student and youth travel agency, where for the last four years he was Chief Commercial Officer for the Group, with responsibilities including global partnerships, product development and subsidiaries. Prior to STA Travel he worked for several companies, including eight years at Delta Air Lines in various international commercial roles. 

Karin’s leadership, vision and drive have been invaluable to the success of Hotels & More. As a Non-Executive Director of the board of Tour Partner Group she will continue to play a central role in its development, which will benefit from her wealth of experience. 

The establishment of Tour Partner Group marks a significant milestone in the growth of the business, as it expands its portfolio of brands and strengthens its market leading position as a destination management company in the UK & Ireland. The businesses of Tour Partner Group will continue to operate under their own brands and be independently led, benefitting from the efficiencies of a shared Group infrastructure to strengthen operations, enhance capabilities and support an expanded geographical footprint. The management teams will work closely with Paul and Tour Partner Group’s Board to support the strategic direction of the Group and deliver best in class travel solutions to their clients and suppliers alike.

2017 has been a year of continued investment for the business with the merger of Irish Welcome Tours following the earlier appointments of Mark Pharoah as Group Chief Financial Officer and Vera Lett as Commercial Director.

Mark Mayhew, Chairman of Tour Partner Group, commented; “Karin has been a terrific leader for the business, having accomplished so much for Hotels & More, and I would like to thank her for all her hard work and dedication to date. I am delighted we will continue to benefit from her experience as she moves into her new role as a Non-Executive Director. Adding someone of Paul’s calibre as Group Chief Executive Officer, who brings considerable expertise and industry knowledge, is a clear indicator of our growth ambitions and strengthens our continued momentum.”

Karin Urban commented; ”In 1996 we established Hotels & More recognising the market appetite for a  UK inbound tour operator. In recent years, as the business has grown, we began exploring how to partner with new companies to expand our offering and enter new markets. The merger with Irish Welcome Tours will hopefully be the first of many and the formation of Tour Partner Group will help to facilitate this. I would like to thank my team and all of those who have made this possible and I look forward to continuing our work together in my new role.”

Paul Maine added; ”The creation of Tour Partner Group presents an incredibly exciting opportunity in the destination management sector, with the chance to consolidate a fragmented, but growing, market across Europe. I am eager to start working with the teams to realise the Group’s full potential.”