July 16, 2024

Team Work

We chat with Virgin Atlantic about its newly-formed team dedicated to SMEs and new business, and what else it is doing specifically for these sectors

Tell us about the new team

The New Business team was recruited earlier this year to focus on SME sales and new business, specifically focusing on the business travel segment. Jo Kernohan, Mark Ramsey and Matthew Bingham make up our new team, headed up by Senior Manager Amy Stirling who, in July, celebrates her 14th anniversary at Virgin Atlantic! Jo has recently re-joined Virgin Atlantic after a 20-year sales career with us, Matthew brings 25 years of experience in business development and new business sales, and Mark has eight years of account management and sales experience.

What is the role of the new team?

The team will be focused on reconnecting and engaging with our corporate loyalty (Bluebiz) clients, along with nurturing new business leads. It will also work closely with our TMC account management teams to support our partners in the SME space.

Why has the team been formed?

This team is part of our drive to grow both our corporate and trade account management teams by around 50%, cementing our unwavering commitment to our partners across the industry. Having sector-specific dedicated account managers means we can bring specialist experience to the SME sector. During and immediately after the pandemic we weren’t able to focus on SME and new business. We know this is where our TMC partners have placed a focus for this year and beyond so we’ve listened to feedback and acted.

“SMEs are a huge part of our plan for 2024 and we know we need to focus on and engage with these travellers and businesses”

How important are SMEs to Virgin Atlantic?

SMEs are a huge part of our plan for 2024 and we know we need to focus on and engage with these travellers and businesses. For the first time ever, we exhibited at the SME XPO and we are dedicated to making sure that we are the airline of choice for this community.

What else are you doing to revamp this sector?

We’re focussed on working with our eJV partners (Delta, KLM and Air France) to provide a seamless business traveller experience. We’re working to ensure we have the right content for SME travellers, along with products and services in line with our corporate loyalty programmes. We also really value feedback – and act on it – and would love to hear from travellers themselves!