Now in its 25th year, learn how BTN Europe's Leading TMCs report is compiled and why the Covid pandemic necessitated some changes

2020 was not a year which anyone in the business travel sector is keen to repeat any time soon and our leading TMCs report, like the industry, looks very different this year too.

For the first time we have expanded our coverage beyond the UK and by compiling rankings and reports for the TMC sector in France and Germany too. We have also assessed the global TMCs' overall stature in the continent and provided a rundown of the leading TMC networks and consortia.

Europe's Leading TMCs 2021 is compiled from information supplied from travel management companies during a three-month period from March to May each year. The information is gathered through a comprehensive questionnaire that we review every year for its relevance.

The survey includes questions on financial performance and transactions and we are very grateful to TMCs for providing the information that is vital for creating this ranking.

However, we recognise that 2020 was not a year that TMCs are likely to want to remember. We therefore changed our ranking methodology for this year to reflect that business has been decimated. We asked all our TMCs to provide us with combined gross sales figures for 2019 and 2020, rather than the last year alone.

In another notable departure, it was decided these figures would only be used internally to create the ranking and they have not been published within the report. We do not believe it is fair to share that information in such a year.

Some TMCs are unwilling to supply us answers to every question for this annual report, including the key financial statistics that we use to rank TMCs. A few years ago we took the decision to include all of the major TMCs in this ranking, regardless of whether they supplied the necessary information. This means that for some TMCs, we have to make estimates of certain key figures, notably the gross sales figure, rather like the compilers of the Sunday Times Rich List do. These are clearly marked.

We make these estimates as rigorous as possible. This involves looking at the company registers in all of the countries in the report, analysing air spend figures from IATA’s Billing and Settlement Plan and taking note of public statements about changes in client spend and turnover. We believe that the figures we use reflect the state of the market. However, we recognise that the ranking may not completely reflect the true state of the market. We therefore encourage all TMCs in the ranking, as well as those who are not included and who believe they should be, to share their details with us so they can be included in future editions. Please email [email protected] with any questions or comments.

Discover the background to Europe’s multinational TMCs whose presence span the continent, read analysis of the UK, French and German TMC markets, and explore the mergers and acquisitions reshaping the industry