Easyjet and national tourism agency VisitBritain have agreed to invest £18m, in both cash and marketing resource, over a four-year period to market Britain as a destination, including maximizing opportunities provided by this year’s Royal Wedding, the Diamond Jubilee and the London 2012 Games.
Easyjet is the latest private sector company to contribute towards the agency’s £100m marketing fund. Private funding is designed to match the £50m of public money already committed by VisitBritain.
The agency says its campaign, to be launched in Britain’s key inbound tourism markets later this year, aims to deliver:
? Four million extra overseas visitors,
? £2bn more visitor spending the UK, and
? 50,000 new jobs
Easyjet will focus its contribution to the campaign in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Switzerland, where the company has local staff and marketing agencies available to drive a number of multi-media campaigns.
Sandie Dawe, Chief Executive at VisitBritain said: “We are delighted that Easyjet has signed up to be one of the founding partners of our marketing campaign and look forward to working with them to ensure that the opportunities we have in the years ahead are turned into growth for our tourism industry across Britain.”
Easyjet CEO Carolyn McCall said: “Over 300m Europeans live within a one-hour drive of an Easyjet airport and this partnership will help us bring even more visitors to the UK. Easyjet is committed to positioning Britain as a top tourist destination and increasing visitor numbers.”
Tourism Minister John Penrose also described the link up as “excellent news”.
“Easyjet is joining a distinguished group of key tourism businesses, whose support will help us make the most of everything that’s going on in the UK over the next couple of years,” the minister added. “The eyes of the world will be on us from next month, right through to the end of 2012 and beyond. Thanks to Easyjet and the other backers, we will be well-placed to make sure that this interest is turned into sustained growth for our tourist industry, and a cause for real national pride.”
Meanwhile, Head of VisitBritain’s Business Tourism Unit, Simon Mills, will leave the agency on 31 March after just 15 months in the post. It is the first redundancy announced in the department, following the axing of the unit as Government cuts to the agency’s budget work through the system.
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