A&K director of sales and business development to leave brand

Luxury operator Abercrombie & Kent’s director of sales and business development is set to leave the brand this month.

James Coughlan, who joined A&K in November 2019, looked after sales for UK and Europe.

Confirmation of his departure followed the announcement this week that the company’s chief tour operating officer, Kerry Golds, was also leaving the brand.

Golds originally joined A&K as UK managing director in 2013. Her role had evolved over the past 10 years, with her most recently having responsibility for the commercial success of the operator’s offices in the UK, Australia and the US.

A spokesman for A&K confirmed Coughlan’s departure, and also that of Donna Jeavons, who joined in June 2022 as UK managing director. He said she left the business “some months ago”.

Other departures from the brand this year include marketing director Ben Briggs and trade sales manager Mark Harris, who joined Exsus Travel as head of trade sales.

Coughlan said: “After four years at A&K, I’ve decided to move on. I am grateful for the unwavering support, guidance, and camaraderie extended by my colleagues. Together, we have worked tirelessly to achieve and even surpass our targets, showcasing our collective dedication and expertise.

“I leave with a deep sense of pride, and the satisfaction of knowing that our hard work has yielded remarkable success with sales exceeding pre-pandemic levels.”

Back in 2019, A&K’s founder Geoffrey Kent joined forces with Silversea Cruises’ executive chairman Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio to jointly acquire the business, which was previously owned by Chinese firm Zhonghong Holdings Group and Kent.

The deal saw Kent increase his stake in A&K Travel Group to 15%, with the remaining 85% belonging to Lefebvre d’Ovidio’s Heritage Group, which also owns his remaining shares in Silverseas Cruises.

In June 2022, the A&K Travel Group confirmed the acquisition of two Crystal Cruises ocean-going ships, and the Crystal Cruises brand.

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