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Frosch International Travel acquired Valerie Wilson Travel (VWT) on April 30. The acquisition brings together two of travel’s most well-known brands, as well as families — the Wilson family of VWT and the Leibman family of Frosch. VWT will operate as an independent brand under the Frosch umbrella with continued leadership from its founder, chairman and CEO, Valerie Ann Wilson. Jennifer Wilson-Buttigieg and Kimberly Wilson Wetty will stay on as co-presidents of VWT; both will join the Frosh executive team and assume senior leadership positions at Frosch.
Celebrating its 40th anniversary this September, VWT is one of the most respected brands in luxury travel. By combining the two brands, Frosch adds a powerhouse player in luxury travel, while VWT will benefit from Frosch’s technology and international network. In addition, the two companies have similar backgrounds as family-owned businesses with compatible philosophies. Combining the agencies should provide advisors and independent contractors (IC) with more opportunities as travel ramps up post-pandemic.
- Brian Buttigieg will be appointed VWT’s COO, effective immediately, and join the Frosh executive team as general counsel. Patrick Fragale, executive vice president for VWT, will expand his leadership responsibilities at the agency.
- VWT has been a major member of Virtuoso since 1998, while Frosch is part of Signature Travel Network. Both brands will continue with these affiliations.
“Valerie and I founded our companies based on similar core values, and I have the utmost respect for what she built,” said Richard Leibman, chairman of Frosch. “Like Frosch, VWT’s reputation is stellar, and it is wonderful to see a successful continuity from one generation to the next. I am very proud of what our children — Bryan, Lara, Jennifer, Kimberly and Brian — have accomplished.”
This combination completely differentiates us from our competitors. We will now have the scale and scope to dominate in all sectors of luxury travel, with both a high-touch and a high-tech offering.
“Bryan and I have developed a mutual respect and friendship over the years, and we both unequivocally have a deep commitment to family and a passion to leverage our entrepreneurial mindsets,” said Jennifer Wilson-Buttigieg. “This combination completely differentiates us from our competitors. We will now have the scale and scope to dominate in all sectors of luxury travel, with both a high-touch and a high-tech offering. We are excited to be the leading company for top ICs/Associates and to collectively rebuild travel as a viable career and maximize our combined resources, relationships and infrastructure.”
“This will give us an especially large presence in the Western U.S.,” said Marc Kazlauskas, president of the leisure division and U.S. branch operations for Frosch. “Combined, we’ll be one of the largest luxury leisure and corporate players in California, as well as in Colorado. This joining of two great families, two great brands and our established relationships that we both have with our partners will help us become the best travel company in the industry. And we’re able to do it the right way — our way — and we’ll bring on new advisors because they want to be a part of our culture, our community and our family.”
Valerie Wilson Travelwww.valeriewilsontravel.com