Ark Travels takes new avatar

One of the leading B2B cruise and luxury resort consolidators, Ark Travels announced launch of a new corporate brand identity – Ark Travel Group.  Explaining the idea behind rebranding, Kishan Biyani, MD, Ark Travel Group said that after nine years of success in cruise business, they thought to repeat the same for land packages.

Hazel Jain

Ark Travels, one of the leading B2B cruise and luxury resort consolidators announced the launch of a new corporate brand identity.It rebrands itself as Ark Travel Group with a new logo to represent its expanded focus.

Announcing a complete re-haul and rebranding of the company to consolidate the business after the pandemic abates, Kishan Biyani, Managing  Director, Ark Travel Group, said, “We have rebranded ourselves. The new company is called Ark Travel Group and will expand its focus from not just cruising, but also tour packages and representation. So we have four main segments: Ark Journeys, Ark Representation, Ark Tech and Ark Cruises, which has been the core of our business. These will be led by different people from the company. We will keep adding more and more segments to this.”

Explaining the thought process behind this rebranding, Biyani says, “After nine years of acquiring Ark Travels and focussing on the cruise market, we realised that we had done a great job developing that segment in India. I then started thinking about how we could do the same for land packages as well and offer new and different services to my travel partners. While the pandemic was the worst time for the travel trade, there were opportunities for people to branch out and innovate and try something new. That was the time when we did a lot of contracting with hotels and selling Maldives. Moreover, through Outbound Konnections, we started collaborating with some DMCs, hotel chains and attractions. For the next five years, I don’t think we as an industry need to look back. One thing I learnt from the pandemic is that you cannot put all your eggs in one basket.”

River cruising will be big

Sharing his perspective on cruising, Niyani said, “When we talk about cruises, it is all about the big ships. But in future we are looking at river cruising, which is untapped market in India and someone needs to take an initiative to develop it. We plan to do that. Having said that, we don’t see fly-cruise market taking a backseat. The idea is to offer a lot of value-adds to the customer at no cost, and that is what excites them. That has been our USP for many years and we plan to continue offering this with river cruises as well. We will do this for our travel agents, which, in turn, translates to benefits to their client.” Biyani revealed that the company is on the verge of closing a charter for March 2023 for a river cruise.

Chatbot: A new launch

Ark Travel Group has recently launched a new, one-of-a-kind feature – a chatbot – for one of the cruise lines to help the travel fraternity. Biyani said, “We have put it on Facebook for a couple of our travel agents partners and it will answer some of the FAQs. This is a first in the cruising industry, and if it takes off, we will create it for all the cruise lines.”

With Ark Representation, the company will acquire clients from Outbound Konnections. Ark Journeys already promotes Europamundo and a few hotels. Ark Tech has the DeckPro platform. But while DeckPro was just a platform, Ark Tech will have APIs for a couple of cruise lines, as well as clients that it represents and plans to bring on that system. This could be to educate its trade partners with presentations. Ark Travel Group has already signed up Calculus, a DMC for South Africa, Cape Town Helicopters, Sarova Hotels & Resorts among others.

 

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