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Who are this week's industry movers & shakers

Who got a new gig this week? Check out this week’s travel industry’s movers and shakers!

Who got a new gig this week? Check out this week’s travel industry’s movers and shakers!



1. New CEO sails into Costa

Costa appointment

Michael Thamm, CEO of the Costa Group, announced that Buhdy Bok, the current Senior Vice President Asia Pacific & China, would be promoted to President of Costa Asia, Costa Cruises Pacific & China, effectively from 1 February 2015.

The promotion reflects Costa Group’s increasing expansion in the fast-growing Asia market, with a particular focus on China.

Buhdy joined Costa in May 2011 as Vice President China. From January 2012, his role was extended to cover the rest of Asia Pacific region and he took the position of Senior Vice President Asia Pacific & China in July 2013.

Before coming to Costa, Buhdy spent 15 years in a distinguished career at Singapore Airlines, where he worked in a number of positions both at the company’s head office in Singapore and abroad.

Buhdy obtained his Master of Business Administration from Duke University (Fuqua School of Business) in the United States. He also holds an accountancy degree from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and a law degree from University of London.


2. Castaway Island Fiji gets a new marketing manager


Ms Kini Saukuru has joined Castaway Island Fiji as Sales and Marketing Manager and will spend her time between Nadi and the resort working across sales, marketing and reservations.

A well-known and respected figure in the tourism industry, Kini started her hospitality career in 1996 at Matamanoa Island Resort where she worked in the front office, accounts, cost control, purchasing and sales departments.  By the time she left the resort in 2006 she held the position of Resort Operations Manager/ Assistant Manager.

From 2006 to 2009 she held the position of Sales and Marketing Manager / Reservations & Operations Manager for Viwa Island Resort.

Prior to her Castaway Island appointment she was Sales and Marketing Manager at Musket Cove Island Resort and Marina.

Kini, who lists her interests as cooking, reading, gardening and sports has also been an active community worker.  She has been a member of the Fiji Hotel Workers Volleyball Association Committee, the Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association Mamanuca Marketing Committee, an executive committee member of the Mamanuca Environment Society, a liaison officer between the I Taukei Motu and MES/Coral Cay Conservation and fundraising project manager for the Matamanoa MPA/ Tavua Village MPA and surrounding house reef.

Kini will report to Castaway Island General Manager, Steven Andrews and Director of Sales & Marketing Paul Cutler based in Sydney, Australia.


3. San Fran promotes Funke new VP


The San Francisco Travel Association has promoted Hubertus Funke to Vice President.

Funke joined San Francisco Travel on June 7, 2007, as Director of International Tourism – Europe & Latin America. His background in the international tourism industry includes work with the largest inbound receptives, AlliedTPro and New World Travel, both in New York City and San Francisco.

He also carries experience from Kuoni Travel in New York and TUI in Germany. Funke, who is a native German, is multilingual, fluent in written and verbal German and English, while proficient in French and Spanish.

“In his elevated role, Hubertus will take on a much more strategic function in how San Francisco Travel attracts key visitors to our city, plus concerted efforts with San Francisco International Airport to expand international air service.”

Tom Kiely, San Francisco Travel’s Executive Vice President-Tourism


4. TravMedia’s new regional manager


TravMedia has appointed Angela Thompson as the new regional manager for the online networking site and Food4Media.

Angela has an extensive background in PR and marketing, having worked in the travel and food industries with international tour operator, Globus Family of Brands, and most recently as marketing and communications manager for Trippas White Group, a leading Australian hospitality group.

She has also worked alongside editorial teams for a top Canadian magazine publisher and for a boutique PR agency in Sydney, which she says he given her great insights into working both PR and media side.

“Such an exciting opportunity to work within two vibrant industries and with a dynamic global organisation with Nick, Dominika, Lauren, Kim, Jess and the team.”

Angela Thompson, TravMedia Regional Manager


5. Etihad appoints new head of Spain


Etihad Airways has appointed Mr Jordi Porcel Cortes as its General Manager for Spain.

Jordi Porcel will be based in Etihad Airways’ new Madrid office, where he will lead the airline’s Spanish commercial operations.

The appointment comes as Etihad Airways prepares to launch direct flights between Madrid and Abu Dhabi on 30 March 2015.

Bringing a wealth of industry experience to the airline, Jordi previously worked for Vueling Airlines, where he served as Chief Sales Officer, responsible for sales for the past three years. Prior to joining Vueling Airlines, he worked in various managerial positions at British Airways, lastly as Regional Commercial Manager Spain, Portugal and Latin America.

Jordi holds a Commercial and Marketing degree from the ESEM School and an Executive MBA from the Instituto de Empresa. He also holds degrees from the WTTA University in Johannesburg and the IBM Business School in London.

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