New MD will drive holiday firm's national expansion [Western Morning News (England)]
(Western Morning News (England) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Upmarket holiday lets business Blue Chip Holidays has appointed a new managing director, as it positions itself to embark upon a strategy to become a major national operator. Blue Chip - which has offices in Brixham and Exeter currently lets properties in the Westcountry, Isle of Wight, Wales and Yorkshire - has announced that Allan Lambert has joined as its MD, from leading domestic tour operator Bourne Leisure.
Mr Lambert will take over from Alan Taylor - who will remain on the Blue Chip board of directors - on March 28 and spearhead its transition from a regional operator to a national 'leader' in the field of high-end holiday home and lodge lets.
Over the past five years Blue Chip Holidays has grown from 480 properties to over 900. Mr Lambert will be driving the business' expansion into a range of key new locations across the UK including Yorkshire, where the business has just appointed the former managing director of Dales Holiday Cottages, Jonathan Smith, to head up property acquisition. The Cotswolds, Wales and 'high demand' locations around the South East coast are also on Blue Chip Holidays' target list.
The business is also pursuing new markets and holiday rental concepts including the holiday lodge market, aiming to bring on board over 200 four and five star lodges nationwide over the next two years. Its aim is to provide 'serious competition' to market leader Hoseasons. Chairman Liam Gavin said: "This year alone we aim to grow from 890 four and fivestar properties to in excess of 1,200, and over the next two years we are targeting a national portfolio of more than 1,500 properties.
"Allan is perfectly placed to enable the business to achieve these growth plans, having held senior sales, marketing and commercial roles across Bourne Leisure working for the Butlins, Haven and Warner Leisure Hotels brands." Mr Lambert, who is also a director of the Institute of Travel and Tourism, is the latest in a number of senior appointments made by the company over recent years. The former chief executive of Hoseasons, Richard Carrick, joined its board as a non executive director in 2011. Since then, it has also appointed John Whitaker, former financial director within the Wyndham Worldwide Group; Stewart Black, former head of sales at Homeaway Holiday Rentals; Clive Haden, former development director at Hoseasons, and Sam Wrigglesworth, former business development manager in Hoseasons' holidays, lodges and parks division.
Mr Lambert said: "I'm very excited to be joining Blue Chip Holidays at such a significant time for the business with its ambitious plans and appetite for growth."
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