MLT Vacations Names Caldwell as President Replacing Pomerantz
By James Shillinglaw
April 27, 2012 11:24 AM
MLT Vacations, one of the top wholesale vacation operators in the U.S., and parent Delta Air Lines, in a surprise move, have named John Caldwell as president and CEO. Caldwell replaces the veteran Ken Pomerantz, who served as president of MLT for the past six years and has been with the company since 2000, and Larry Chestler, chief executive officer, who has been with the company since 2000 as well. “Larry and Ken have provided outstanding leadership and will continue in an advisory role throughout the transition,” MLT said.
MLT Vacations said that under Caldwell’s leadership it intends to fully evaluate its organization and business practices in order to identify opportunities to deliver an even higher level of service and support to travel agents and their clients. Indeed, MLT Vacations said it has already begun to implement strategic improvements in the way it works with Delta, which it said would result in an enhanced level of service for travel agents. “There will be a thorough evaluation of the organization and business practices in order to identify opportunities to further expand and enhance the successful MLT business model,” MLT said. “This includes identifying opportunities to deliver an even higher level of service and support to travel agents and their clients.”
Caldwell most recently served as managing director-national account sales and specialty sales at Delta. He has served for many years in leadership roles within the sales and marketing organizations first at Northwest Airlines and then at Delta Air Lines. “John has served many years in leadership roles within the sales and marketing organizations first at Northwest and now at Delta,” said Steve Sear, senior vice president of global sales for Delta, who sent a letter to travel agents explaining the executive changes earlier in the week. “Throughout his career he has had numerous opportunities to work with MLT Vacations to develop and implement successful programs for travel agent customers, and I know he is looking forward to building even stronger relationships with the travel agent community in his new role,” he added.
Caldwell said travel agents remain an integral part of MLT Vacations business the company is committed to its travel agent partners. “There are no changes planned for the way we do business with travel agents, and their standing with MLT Vacations will remain the same, as will their commission levels and reward opportunities,” he said. “We are now focused on providing travel agents with exceptional customer service throughout this leadership transition and far into the future.”
MLT Vacations manages multiple vacation brands, including Delta Vacations, in partnership with Air France Holidays and Alitalia Vacations; United Vacations; and Worry-Free Vacations. It also recently signed to operate Aeromexico Vacations. MLT said it doesn’t anticipate any negative reaction from United to the executive changes. “As MLT Vacations continues through this transition, we expect that we will be able to provide travel agents in key United Vacations markets and our partners with even more service, support and revenue opportunities,” the company said.