Thomas Cook has teamed up with a Japanese inbound travel agency to set up a DMC.
The move, says Cook, will aim to grow its share of Japanese inbound tourism from China.
On Tuesday (March 12), Thomas Cook China, Cook’s joint venture with China’s Fosum Tourism Group, announced it had signed an agreement with Hanatour Japan to establish a DMC.
The new joint venture, says Cook, will focus on inbound tourism business from China.
It will combine Cook’s technology and distribution channels in the Chinese market with Hanatour’s on-the-ground resources, experience and expertise to develop new product and services for Chinese travellers.
According to Cook, Japan is the fastest-growing destination for Chinese travellers and already one of Thomas Cook China’s largest outbound tourism earners.
Last year, eight million Chinese travellers visited Japan, an increase of 12% on 2017.
“This partnership is part of Thomas Cook China’s strategy to develop high-quality products and build its presence in key destinations for Chinese tourists,” said Cook in a statement.
Alessandro Dassi, chief executive of Thomas Cook China, said: “Our new partnership with Hanatour Japan will give Thomas Cook China greater access and better control of the hotels and services we offer in Japan, allowing us to accelerate growth into this key market for Chinese travellers.
“We are excited by the prospect of working closely with Hanatour Japan to offer more choice and improved quality to our Chinese customers.”
Byung-Chan Lee, president and chief executive of Hanatour Japan, added: “We are delighted to partner with an iconic brand such as Thomas Cook. We believe that inbound tourism from China will continue to grow over the next five to 10 years. Our new joint venture with Thomas Cook China gives us an opportunity to better leverage our existing resources to gain a share in this market.”