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September 2022, Virtual
September 29 2022, Virtual
Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) has bought the major US travel management company Navigant International for $510m.
At the same time Carlson Companies and One Equity Partners (OEP) have bought Accor Hotels' 50% stake in the Paris-based travel management company for $465m.
The CWT deal to take over Navigant which traded as TQ3 Navigant has been approved by both boards but is not likely to close until later this year.
CWT said the acquisition of Navigant doubled its size in North America and expanded its presence in Asia Pacific where Navigant had operations in Australia and New Zealand.
However the impact is less in Europe where Navigate had a sizeable operation in the UK but only a very small presence in France, Belgium and Germany.
The deal strengthens CWT's position as the second largest global TMC. With the acquisition of Navigant's UK operation, it also consolidates CWT's number three position, behind American Express and HRG (formerly BTI) in that country.
Mr Hubert Joly, CWT's president and ceo, said: "Navigant is an important acquisition for CWT that greatly strengthens our competitive position in North America and Asia Pacific.
"It builds upon our momentum and expands CWT's leadership in the business travel market."
Navigant had been a likely target for one of the global TMCs after it split earlier this year from its European partner, TQ3 Travel Solutions Management Holding which has become part of the new BCD Travel company.
Under the Carlson deal, the Minneapolis-based group of companies, which already owned 50% of CWT, will take a further 5%, bringing its holding to 55%.
The remaining 45% will be owned by OEP, a company which manages investments for bankers JP Morgan Chase and Company.
Marilyn Carlson Nelson, chairman and ceo of Carlson Companies, said: "We are extremely pleased that we have the opportunity to become the majority owner of Carlson Wagonlit Travel."
* The story broke in the early hours of Thursday morning – after the weekly BTE newsletter had been sent out. BTE will carry a full story and an Analysis piece in next week's newsletter.