Will Waggott - Profile

  • An experienced portfolio Non Executive Director and Chairman;
  • A commercially driven creative business leader, possessing a strong financial background;
  • Particular expertise in the global travel, tourism and leisure industries, including online and technology enabled businesses; either within large corporations or start-ups;
  • Recognised within travel as a thought leader, with regular speaking engagements and written contributions to travel industry publications;
  • Looking for a challenging role with direct impact on business profitability and development via Non Executive board positions or Chairmanship roles.


1985 Coopers & Lybrand

Qualified Chartered Accountant (ICAEW)
Worked in Audit Department to senior management level. Also worked as a consultant with secondments as Finance Director of Chloride Motive Power and as consultant to the Department of Employment on the privatisation of Technical colleges.

1991 Courtaulds Textiles PLC – Finance Director Ashtons & C T Homeware

Initial role as Group Financial Accountant and then promoted to Financial Director of Ashtons & C T Homeware.
Ashtons manufactured towels (including Christy) both on and off shore and C T Homeware manufactured curtains and bed linen and its major customer was M&S. During my period there we took both businesses from loss to significant profit through improved efficiency and consolidating the number of products manufactured. We also upgraded the manufacturing capability and moved some production to Morocco.

1995 Airtours PLC UK Leisure Group – Finance Director

Performed a number of roles. Initial role was Finance Director of Airtours Holidays. Then promoted to Finance Director of the UK which included the Tour Operator, Retail, Airline and Specialist businesses. Before leaving Airtours I was also responsible for Hotel Contracting, Central Purchasing, Airline Planning, Tour Operating, IT, HR, Legal and Tax.

October 2001 TUI AG Chief Financial Officer – TUI AG Tourism, Chief Financial Officer - TUI Northern Europe, Chief Operating Officer – TUI UK

Moved to Thomson Travel Group in October 2001 as Finance Director which covered the TUI AG Tourism businesses in the UK, Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland. During the period of the merger with First Choice in September 2007 my key achievements were:
  1. Two restructures of the UK business involving over 1,000 redundancies and a relocation from 3 sites (London, Luton and Leamington Spa) to one location in Luton.
  2. A restructure in the Nordic business which, over two years, took the profit from a loss of ~£20m to a profit of ~£20m.
  3. Acting MD of Specialist business with a significant restructure and the disposal of some non-core businesses.
  4. Acting MD of the UK business for 9 months when I rebranded the Retail business from Lunn Poly to Thomson and the Airline from Britannia to Thomson and stayed as COO of the UK business.
  5. Promoted to TUI AG Chief Financial Officer of the AG Tourism business covering the UK, Ireland, Nordic, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, France, Holland and Belgium.
  6. In 2007 I was instrumental in negotiating the merger with First Choice, bringing together two major companies and providing significant synergies for the newly formed UK quoted company TUI Travel PLC.

September 2007 – Finance Director – TUI Travel PLC

On the merger with First Choice I became the Commercial Director of the Group responsible for the performance of all the mainstream businesses (Turnover ~£12bn).

Key Achievements

  1. Planning and delivering over £200m of synergies.
  2. Merger of the loss-making Canadian business (loss of CAD $42m) with another tour operator to create a CAD $100m profitable business.
  3. Huge improvements in MI and yield management processes.
  4. Renegotiation of TTPLC’s 15 Boeing 787 order (USD $1.5bn).
In November 2010 I was promoted to Finance Director of the Group (CF)). Key responsibilities were:
Group Finance
Group Financial Planning
Project Management
Aircraft Buying and Financing
Hotels Division

Key Achievements:

  1. Huge improvements in Investor Relations. Share Price moved from £1.60 to £3.90.
  2. Development of new group strategy.
  3. Significant improvements in financial controls and corporate governance through the introduction of COSO framework.
  4. Purchase of Boeing 757-800 MAX aircraft (USD $6bn).

In May 2016 TUI Group announced the rebranding of the Specialist Group to Travelopia and I was appointed CEO with the mandate to sell this sector of the Group business. In February 2017 I successfully negotiated the sale of Travelopia Holdings Limited to KKR, a leading global investment firm. In June 2017 I was appointed CEO of Travelopia on the finalisation of the sale. I left the business in March 2018.

Key Achievements:

  1. Achieved agreed plan in first two years
  2. Ordered and financed a Polar expedition vessel
  3. initiated an online and CRM transformation project

March 2019 to October 19 Chief of tour Operations world wide Thomas Cook plc

Key achievements:

  1. £80m turnround of UK business
  2. development of specific UK centric product


Daughter aged 13 (from previous marriage)