Open letter on Magellan 22 Jan 18

Open letter on Magellan 22 Jan 18

MAGELLAN founder and past director Kevin Dale has penned an open letter on the group’s planned sale to Helloworld. His letter appears here in full:

A DECADE ago, three travel agents came together to found a new travel group.

They were united by deep disillusionment over successive sales of Australia’s major travel agency chains to public companies.

The members of those chains had no say in this process, and yet it was their success that made the chains attractive to the public companies.

Without consultation, the management of the chains sold the fruits of the agents’ labours and kept the proceeds for themselves.

The three agents pledged their new chain, which they called Magellan Travel, would never be sold without members’ approval.

They said this loud and often. Just as loudly and just as often, they pledged a transparent system of distributing income — 85% to all members; 15% to the founders.

I know all this because I was one of those three agents and, over the ensuing 10 years, I watched proudly as our vision attracted many other agents and Magellan grew to be a respected, happy and prosperous group.

Then, on the Friday before Christmas, the directors finalised an agreement to sell Magellan to Helloworld.

This was a great shock to me.

There was no consultation with members. It was sprung on them.

And in stark contrast to the accepted 85-15 split of income, the vast bulk of the $30 million-plus sale proceeds were to go to the directors.

As a result, Magellan is now riven with dissension, cynicism, anger and disillusionment.

How could the idealism of the three founders come to this?

I will give my views on this distressing situation in some detail in the next issue of Travel Bulletin.

In the meantime, I believe tomorrow’s meeting of Magellan agents must decide:

1) the proposed sale will only go ahead if supported by a majority of members

2) the proceeds of any sale will be distributed 85% (members) 15% (directors).

Kevin DaleMagellan founder and director, 2008 — 30 Jun 2017.

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Source: traveldaily