Monday, May 4, 2009

New EXPE Board Member - Chairman of Amadeus - really!

In a small 8K filing late last month, Expedia added Jose Antonio Tazon to the Board of Directors. Tazon replaced Expedia long-time insider and fellow European Simon Breakwell who left the board.

Breakwell leaving isn't particularly interesting aside from the fact that he was one of the "old guard" from earlier times - he joined the company in 1997.

But the Chairman of one of the big three GDS systems joining the board is interesting indeed. Clearly, Tazon brings a wealth of European knowledge and insight to Expedia - which could be crucial as Expedia continues to slug it out with the likes of in particular. Amadeus also brings deep experience in serving both airlines and travel agents alike.

But Amadeus' market strength comes from the European Markets - not North America where Expedia's strengths lie.

Amadeus, on the other hand, unlike Travelport and Sabre, has limited experience in the direct-to-consumer online travel agency space. From a consumer marketing standpoint, clearly Expedia sets the bar.

We doubt this is a prognostication of further consolidation within the travel distribution space (yet) but Expedia and Amadeus certainly have plenty to learn from each other.


  1. Hi Tom,

    I should point out that Mr. Tazón is no longer CEO of Amadeus.

    He was appointed Chairman of the Board from 1 January (see link: ).

    Best regards,

    Amadeus spokesperson

  2. Thank you Amadeus spokesperson! The post has been corrected - too late in the evening, I guess!