An Acquisition Done Right – Travel and Transport & Ultramar One Year Later

October 9, 2013 |

BrooklynBridge_NYSkyline_Ultramar-Acquisition-Travel-and-Transportby Chantel Windeshausen

It’s hard to believe that it has been one year since Travel and Transport’s acquisition of Ultramar Travel Management. One year since papers were signed and lawyers were paid. One year since employees were told that a Midwest company was acquiring a New York based travel management company. One year since two leading travel industry companies came together in a collaborative effort to become a true differentiator in the market. And in just one year the adjustments for each company have been minimal but the positive effects have been immeasurable.

Below are just a few ways that Travel and Transport successfully completed the acquisition of Ultramar Travel Management while both maintaining separate identities.

1. Benefits for our Clients –Through combined buying power we have improved our ability to negotiate with our preferred suppliers evidenced by increased cost savings with air suppliers ranging from JetBlue to Korean Air and offering more than 30,000 negotiated hotel discounts through our 2013 Hotel Program.

2. Hotel Program Synergies – Both companies offer a strong hotel program for our clients. By collaborating we have leveraged Ultramar’s Preferred Program to bring our clients more options and costs savings. The new program targets high volume, primary markets with volume discounts to complement the travel management company rate-parity level ensuring the best options at the best rates.  Together they provide a comprehensive supplement to our clients’ own negotiated hotel programs.

3. Tremendous Growth – The acquisition certainly did not slow each of our sales team down. Both are showing signs of record-breaking sales for 2013 and are using each other’s strengths to provide additional value added services in the sales process.

4. Global Network – Ultramar has joined Travel and Transport as a shareholder within the Radius Travel network, providing an enhanced global offering.

5. Benefits for the Employees – For Ultramar employees, insurance packages and policies were transitioned over to Travel and Transport’s insurance carriers. This change provided all employees the benefits of negotiated savings with our insurance carriers.

6. No reorganization – One of the first thoughts for employees during an acquisition is the potential for reorganization and layoffs. Not the case for Travel and Transport and Ultramar.  In fact, we have each grown our staff to accommodate for the increase of sales that is occurring in both companies

7. Culture is King –Though we are headquartered over 1,200 miles apart the cultural aspects of our two distinct companies mirror one another. Both companies were built around the idea that providing only the best in customer service is how you grow a successful business. Both companies not only focus on our clients’ specific needs but we put our employees at top of mind at all times. This will remain our mantra for many years to come.

8. We Own It – Through the acquisition we now have a larger base of employee-owners. Ultramar employees can now reap the benefits of serving as an employee-owner for one of the largest travel management companies in the U.S.

9. Separate Brand Identities – Travel and Transport went through a brand update in March of 2013 while at the same time Ultramar completed their final phase of rebranding with the launch of a new travel focused website. Each continues to hold separate identities that prove to work well for each other in the sales process.

Acquisitions don’t always have to be a scary event. For Travel and Transport and Ultramar it has proven to be a win – win. We will continue to work with each other’s strengths to develop valued added services for our clients while at the same time providing continued strength and support for our employee-owners.