Jon French

Director, Swift Travel Consultancy Ltd

Jon French

About Jon

Jon is aboard-level executive / MD with an extraordinary depth of knowledge in both B2C and B2B travel businesses. His range of achievements are as diverse as leading teams of up to 200 people, and generating start-up projects (easyJet holidays, and OTA OctopusTravel Spain) and launching Dynamic Packaging and other new product development for (ebookers/Orbitz). Jon’s knowledge of technology in travel is impressive, and he has worked on multiple optimisation projects and is experienced in the challenges of technology project work from concept to delivery. Prior to Swift & his other engagements, Jon led the Strategic Partnerships team at Hotelbeds, developing their airline proposition&led its ground-breaking partnership with EasyJet Holidays. Jon’s B2C credentials also include covering senior/board roles at Late Rooms and ebookers/Orbitz, and taking on the Managing Director’s role at  OTA Octopus Travel Spain, an early adopter of online travel back in 2004.. Jon started his career in contracting transportation, Tours, and Activities in the Middle East and the Mediterranean , and built his early reputation on worldwide buying in the Destination Services division of Gulliver’s Travel Associates.

Jon has lived & worked abroad, including in Australia and Spain – he is also fluent in Spanish. He now lives on the Kent coast with his family and is a lover of travelling & (relatively)healthy living.

Major Achievements

  • Set-up two organisations from scratch, delivering growth & customer success in both.
  • Struck landmark deals such as Singapore Airlines for Hotelbeds Strategic Partnerships.
  • Developed new beach product stream for Orbitz/ebookers,delivering over$30M revenues.

September 2015-October 2019


Director of Strategic Partnerships

  • Business Development for New Customer Segments (Airlines, Loyalty, Digital, non-Travel).
  • Management and development of key customer relationships in EMEA and APAC.
  • Launching new Business Product – Dynamic Packaging platform- a technology and product solution to sell to existing and new customers.
  • Business Product Owner for B2B2C division (platforms, and strategy).


Key achievements:

  • Winning several landmark global airline deals (through RFP) and complex negotiations.
  • Growing and retaining key customer partnerships – more than doubling revenue from airline customers in 4 years.
  • Building sustainable pipeline for new business to diversify Hotelbeds’ future client mix.
  • Building, coaching and mentoring EMEA & APAC strategic partnership team, reducing attrition by 100%.
  • Building Hotelbeds packaging product proposition, obtaining buy-in from Management board.
  • Overseeing complex multi-million-pound value technology projects with multiple stakeholders, delivering to timelines and within budget. (eg Singapore Airlines Holidays and Luxair Holidays)
  • Led growth of Hotelbeds B2B2C business proposition, increasing revenue from this channel by 50% over 4 years – Hotelopia and Lastminute Travel brand had a turnover of EUR 100m.
  • Member of Commercial Senior Leadership Team.

November 2013-September 2015

easyJet holidays | Hotelopia Holidays                         

Pan-European Tour Operator selling holiday packages in the Hotelbeds Group of companies part of TUI AG, set up to operate on behalf of easyJet airline, based in Palma Mallorca, Spain.

 Director of easyJet holidays

  • MD of Tour Operator overseeing team of 60 FTE – Digital Marketing, Product, Call Centre, Technology and Finance teams.
  • P&L Responsibility
  • Commercial and Business Development.
  • Strategic direction of the company and overall relationship with easyJet.


Key achievements:

  • Set up a business unit from scratch, including recruitment of teams
  • Successfully launched technology and holidays product in 7 European markets, subsequently optimizing conversion & profitability – growing the business substantially for EasyJet to subsequently take the business in-house.

April 2013-November 2013

The Laterooms Group                                                 

Operations Director (Interim)

  • Board-level Director, responsible for the Global Hotel Relationships, operations of contact centres – overseeing team of 200.
  • Account Management – strategic direction of key Hotel Accounts
  • Commercial Product Strategy & Supplier Engagement – focus on pricing, availability and connectivity.
  • Customer Contact Strategy – voice of the customer within Laterooms Group.


Key achievements:

  • Introduced Streamlined account management organisation, enabling the company to deliver higher growth in top performing hotels.
  • Introduced new staff KPIs to be able to better measure productivity and performance.
  • Significantly improved business performance analysis by introducing better customer feedback options and a better view of hotel level performance.
  • Business Re-engineering – Led process to reduce costs by required 25% and centralise business units.

February 2006 to October 2012

Ebookers | Orbitz                                                         

Ebookers is a pan-European online travel agency, now owned by Expedia Group.

Director, Hotel and Package Product

  • Deliver Business Performance & Revenue Management improvements in 12 European country sites.
  • Business Development for hotels & packages–identifying global opportunities for hotel distribution.
  • Shadow P&L responsibility for hotel and package products.
  • Product Management – Matching supply with demand. Acquisition of the right hotel inventory, and allocation of hotel contracting resources.
  • Improve Marketing efficiency for hotel and package sales across all marketing channels.


Key Achievements:

  • Increased share of hotel room nights as part of product mix – a key company strategy to be less reliant on air only product.
  • Initiated Hotel and Package Revenue Management Optimisation function at ebookers.
  • Oversaw the development of “ebookers for Agents” Retail B2B programme.
  • Drew up & implemented a strategy for beach product to grow ebookers share of this segment – leading to an increase in revenue of over $ 30 million over 3 years.
  • Introduced Dynamic Packaging Product across ebookers 12 country sites – by 2012 this represented EUR 300m in Gross bookings and was the most profitable product line.
  • Key participant in “Crystal Ball” internal think-tank to future-proof the business.
  • Led business workstreams in a USD 145m technology platform migration.

February 2004 to February 2006.

OctopusTravel Madrid                                                 

OctopusTravel was an online Travel agency selling accommodation and Destination Services.


Managing Director

  • Set up subsidiary for online accommodation provider in Madrid – essentially an OTA start-up.
  • Full P&L ownership
  • Launch the brand in Spain, across all distribution channels and set company strategy.
  • Oversee Business Development, Marketing, Finance and Call Centre.


Key Achievements:

  • Built and coached a successful team from scratch.
  • Signed multi-million-euro affiliate and white label distribution deals with airlines and digital platforms – egVueling.
  • Signed distribution agreements through key Travel Agency partnerships in Spain & South America.
  • Built brand recognition through affiliate, PR and press campaigns.

July 1996 to February 2004

Gulliver’s Travel Associates                                     

Worldwide Contracts Manager

  • Set up network of inbound agents in Middle East, Mediterranean, Africa and Latin America
  • Negotiate Contracts for hotels and Destination Services (Transfers, tours, Guides, Restaurants etc).


Key Achievements:

  • Established inbound operations for GTA in USA and Asia Pacific (New York, Bangkok, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Sydney, Singapore)

October 2004-2006

FIT Operations Exec for Spanish-speaking markets.