American Express Global Business Travel (GBT) has agreed to acquire a controlling stake in Kanoo Travel, one of the largest travel management networks in the Middle East.
GBT says it will form a joint venture with the network’s parent company YBA Kanoo Group to provide managed travel and events services to clients in the region. The firm expects the transaction to close in Q4 2019 or early Q1 2020, subject to regulatory approvals.
On completion, GBT will own a 65 percent stake of the new joint venture, which is headquartered in Dubai, and will assume management and operational control of the business and its 539 employees. YBA Kanoo Group will hold the remaining 35 percent stake in the joint venture.
Kanoo Travel has been a member of GBT’s global travel partner network for years and operates in the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.
Commenting on the acquisition, GBT’s MD, international, Elyes Mrad said: “Kanoo Travel has been a trusted, long-term partner for GBT in the region for many years and is known and respected by many of our clients. The creation of the joint venture will enhance how we service those clients and their travellers by combining Kanoo’s region-specific expertise with the backing of GBT’s global scale and technology.”
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