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Travel Management

 January 23, 2013
Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) Celebrates 10 Years In China; Strengthens Commitment To The Market

 Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) achieved a key milestone in its history today, celebrating 10 years in China. CWT also strengthened its commitment to the market by renewing its joint venture relationship with China Air Services (CAS) for a further 10 years.

CWT's history in China began in 2003 through a joint venture with CAS and has grown from 27 employees to over 600 today. The organization now has operations in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Meishan. Over the past 10 years, CWT has helped more than nine million business travelers book their corporate travel and has provided travel management services to over two hundred companies.

To manage further growth, CWT China's leadership team has also expanded. The company recently appointed KJ Wu as deputy general manager to support Albert Zhong, CWT China's general manager, in driving the company's strategy and growth. In addition, CWT Solutions Group, the company's fast-growing consulting arm, has appointed Karen Zhang to oversee the provision of tailor-made services to clients in China.

Douglas Anderson, CWT president and chief executive officer said: "China is an important market in the global economy. Over the past 10 years CWT has achieved significant growth in China as more companies recognize the value and cost-efficiency that travel management services deliver. We have invested significantly in technology specific to this market and remain committed to providing innovative solutions, products and services for our clients."

As part of its drive to create specific products for China-based clients, CWT has launched an industry-first international online booking tool and a China-specific mobile app. As the first and only TMC in China to launch a smartphone version of an online booking tool, CWT gives travelers access to a wide range of in-country mobile services, including booking, itinerary, changes in travel schedule and location-based information.

Albert Zhong, general manager, CWT China said: "During the past decade, China has seen many significant changes in the corporate travel landscape, particularly where technology is concerned. We've seen the introduction of electronic ticketing, Online Booking Tools (OBT) and the explosion of mobile technology in travel. China-based travelers are fast-adopters of new technologies and we expect further developments in the way business travelers plan, book and manage their travel over the next few years."

Ten years of corporate travel management in China

2002: Travel Management Companies arrive in China and specifically target corporate travel;

2003: CWT begins its joint venture relationship with China Air Service

2004: Online Travel Agencies arrive in China and target both leisure and corporate markets;

2006: Electronic ticketing eliminates air paper tickets;

2007: Online Booking Tool solutions are introduced;

2008: IATA changes billing cycle and as a result the travel industry reviews payment processes;

2012: China travel market officially opens to Global Distribution Systems.