Mark Schmitt joins AmaWaterways as head of sales to grow brand in UK

AmaWaterways has recruited Tradewind Voyages’ ex-head of sales Mark Schmitt to lead its sales team.

Schmitt joined the river line on Monday as its head of sales having worked at Fred Olsen Travel since July, where he was project manager.

Prior to his stint at the Suffolk-based agency he was head of sales at Tradewind Voyages for two years before leaving the role in May.

Schmitt will lead AmaWaterways’ UK and Ireland sales team, which currently includes regional business development managers Rachel Simon and Katrina Latimer.

The line is looking to hire a third BDM to cover the southeast of England and the Channel Islands, expanding the team to four for the first time since 2019.

AmaWaterways’ managing director Jamie Loizou said Schmitt’s “experience, connections and passion” would ensure the line continues to offer agents “outstanding service” as “they look to grow their business for 2023 and beyond”.

“Since our founding in 2002, AmaWaterways has been proud to be a 100% trade-focused business,” he said. “Over 90% of our UK business comes via our valued travel agent partners.”

Schmitt said: “I am looking forward to getting started and working with our dedicated travel partners to continue to grow river cruising, and the AmaWaterways brand, in the UK and Ireland.”

Jon Knight vacated his AmaWaterways’ national sales manager position and earlier this month became manager of Miles Morgan Travel’s branch in Bath.

Miles Morgan Travel founder Miles Morgan worked with Knight around 15 years ago at travel agency chain Bakers Dolphin Travel, which started in the mid-1980s and was bought by First Choice in 1998.

Explaining the decision to recruit Knight, Morgan said: “Bath is an important branch for us. Quality managers make a big difference so we are really excited about having Jon in the role because we know what he is capable of.”

He added: “Mandy [Shillito, managing director] and I both worked with Jon at Bakers Dolphin.”

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