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Virgin Blue Gets Down To Business With A Major Expansion of Its Sales Team


Virgin Blue will substantially increase its representation Australia-wide this month with a major expansion of its sales team and the appointment of a number of new key managers at a national level and in the Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, and Perth markets.

This expansion of Virgin Blue’s frontline sales team forms part of the carrier’s strategy to attract more corporate accounts, secure international business and develop its trade sector.

Jon Marshall, General Manager Sales said the new look team has been tasked with taking the airline's corporate accounts to the next level.

"We have made no secret about our commitment to the business market and are now committing significantly increased resources and considerable additional expertise to cater for the needs of this market," he said.

"Virgin Blue is well established in terms of offering affordable fares and award-winning service and we are now poised to offer a unique and innovative business product which will not break t he travel budgets of our clients."

New appointments effective from September include:

Vanessa Young, National Commercial Sales Manager. Ms Young is responsible for growing Virgin Blue's corporate client base. She was previously Director of Sales for Carlson Wagonlit and also has a background in Qantas Commercial Sales.

Lesley Owen, National Travel Industry Manager. Formerly National Sales Manager of United Airlines, Ms Owen was previously with Jetset as General Manager of Fare Deals.

Gordon Young is appointed Interline Manager and is responsible for Code Share and Airline partnerships. Mr Young was previously with American Express where he held the role of Director of Supplier Relations.

Judith North is appointed Virgin Blue International Sales Manager, responsible for inbound sales from overseas markets including the UK, Europe, Asia and USA. Ms North was most recently General Manager Sales at P&O Resorts.

Andrew Kelly is Virgin Blue’s new State Sales Manager, New South Wales. Andrew has a background in Qantas Corporate Sales and more recently high-end real estate sales. He is responsible for new business development as well as leading Virgin Blue’s New South Wales team.

Michael Day joins Virgin Blue as Corporate Account Manager, Victoria. Michael was previously Sales Manager for Ribtex and prior to that, State Sales Manager for Hertz.

David Schlottman joins Virgin Blue as Corporate Account Manager, Queensland. David was previously in International Sales for Brisbane City Marketing, and prior to that was Account Manager, Queensland with the Constellation Hotel Group.

Daniella Fahey will commence with Virgin Blue in Western Australia on the 14th September and will be responsible for Travel Industry Sales. Daniella brings with her a number of years experience with Qantas, where she held a sales executive role in NSW for over four years looking after industry.

Joanne Campbell joins Virgin Blue in Travel Industry Sales from S8 Resorts, where she was previously Sales Manager.

Ingrid Johnson joins Virgin Blue in Travel Industry Sales from Peregrine & Gecko Adventures, where she was Account Manager - New South Wales.

Lara Pierce joins Virgin Blue as Sales Co-ordinator Victoria supporting the Victorian and South Australian Sales Teams. Lara worked in the sales area of Voyager Travel more recently with Qantas.

Beth Mulroney joins Virgin Blue as Sales Co-ordinator New South Wales, providing support for both New South Wales and Western Australia. Beth was previously with the NSW Health Department and prior to that was with Jetstar as assistant to the CEO and ran Guest Relations.

In other moves, John Kelly has been appointed as State Sales Manager VIC/SA/TAS. John was previously Corporate Account Manager VIC with Virgin Blue. Trudie Mansfield from Virgin Blue Perth Sales joins the airline's Queensland based team as Travel Industry Account Manager, Queensland. Anthony Cooper takes on an expanded role as State Sales Manager Queensland, moving from his previous position as Strategic Accounts Manager. Virgin Blue is also excited to welcome back Alison Thomas who will rejoin Virgin Blue in South Australia as Travel Industry Account Manager, South Australia.

Meanwhile, Virgin Blue’s international airline Pacific Blue is thrilled to announce the appointment of two new senior sales staff for both Pacific Blue Airlines and Polynesian Blue Airlines.

Eli Cowley joins the company this week and will be based in Auckland as Sales Manager. Eli has substantial airline sales management experience and joins the team from Air New Zealand in Australia where he was responsible for sales to the Pacific Islands. In his new role, Eli will be responsible for managing sales from the North Island for Pacific Blue across the Tasman and to Tonga and Rarotonga in addition to managing Polynesian Blue sales to Samoa.

Also reflecting the strong focus the airline has on the travel trade industry is the appointment of Regional account Manager Bruce Moffat. Bruce started work for Pacific Blue at the end of September 2005 and is responsible for the greater Wellington region, and the South Island. Bruce has a strong background within the travel industry having spent seven years with Sabre systems. Prior to this he was in sales for a travel agency chain.