Today, India is the brightest jewel in the $6-billion corporation’s emerging market crown. Kuoni is a global leader in visa services through VFS, whose origin, interestingly, is from India. VFS today accounts for a third of the firm’s profits. On a short visit to India, Stefan Leser, Kuoni’s outbound and specialists division CEO, talks to TOI about why the firm is not gung-ho on investing in travel portals, its strategy to ply along with local brands and how an injury scuttled his dreams of becoming a sports coach. Excerpts:
Kuoni recently underwent a business restructuring globally. Where does India figure in the scheme of things?
We have let gone saturated markets where we had sub-scale tour activities, like in Spain, Italy, France and Russia. But we went out of Russia as the market is not structured, resulting in a huge cost disadvantage. Though, Russia is a growth market, we took a call that we should not be there. But India is important for us as here you have structures in place and it’s only a matter of how you take things forward.
Full interview here Times of India