American Express Global Business Travel will hold 65% of new joint venture while YBA Kanoo Group will retain remaining 35%
American Express Global Business Travel (GBT) has entered into an agreement to acquire a controlling stake in Kanoo Travel, one of the largest travel management networks in the Middle East.
GBT said it will form a joint venture with Kanoo Travel to provide managed travel and events services to clients in the Middle East.
Kanoo Travel, which has been a key member of GBT’s global travel partner network for many years, operates in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain and Oman.
A statement said the transaction is subject to receipt of regulatory approvals and customary conditions and is expected to close later this year or in early 2020.
GBT will hold 65 percent of the new joint venture, headquartered in Dubai, and assume management and operational control of the business. YBA Kanoo Group, Kanoo Travel’s mother company will hold the remaining 35 percent stake in the joint venture.
Elyes Mrad, GBT’s managing director, international, 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 travelers by combining Kanoo Travel’s region-specific expertise with the backing of GBT’s global scale and technology.”
Nabeel Khalid Kanoo, president of Kanoo Travel, added: “Our own clients in the Middle East will profit in the long term from having access to GBT’s total travel and expense eco-system, proprietary technology and global reach. Our people are also excited by the possibilities that come with being part of the world’s most recognizable business travel brand.”
The financial terms of the deal were not undisclosed.