Last Wednesday we hosted the fifth Elman Wall Directors’ Summit at Emirates Stadium. The theme this year was Service and Mission, ahead of the new Bond movie, Spectre, and we certainly managed to get ‘one or two’ puns across.

It was great to have over 190 independently owned travel businesses in one room to network, share experiences and exchange knowledge, because after all, Knowledge Is Power.

Here are a few photos from the day:

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Business Intelligence: Knowledge Is Power
The day kicked off with Nigel Dickinson, Managing Director of Key Note, an online market research publisher.

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Experts In The Fields: Special Reports
Next up we heard from our good friends, the sponsors, on topics that they are experts in. Considering they all only had 4 minutes, we think they got across a lot! Above is Christina Foxwell from Moneycorp and our own ‘tax guru’ Russell Eisen.

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Mergers & Acquisitions: Insider Insights 
After coffee we heard an update on M&A activity in travel from Jason Katz of Kings Park Capital, Martin Robinson of Inspiring Learning and ex-Center Parcs, Deborah Potts of Summit Advisory, and moderated by Dan Pearce of TTG Media.
Here’s to long term growth!

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Cyber Security: Defending Your Business
This year we even had a cyber spy present! Bruce Wynn, an independent cyber consultant, gave a live demonstration of cyber attacks and advised how best to protect yourself and your business against the baddies!


500 for 500 Industry Update
Before lunch, Alison Rice, travel journalist and broadcaster, gave us an update as to how the Family Holiday Association’s 500 for 500 campaign in going. Whilst they’re getting there, there is still a way to go. To make a difference to struggling family, please click here. 

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Google: Tools & Trends Revealed
After lunch, we were treated to a very informative session by Mark Daykin of Google. He explained Ad Rank & Quality Score, tools to help you grow your business, who is getting it right in travel, and what’s next.

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In The Chair: David Speakman
Founder of Travel Counsellors, David Speakman, was interviewed by Lee Hayhurst of Travel Weekly about the key to success , which David said, is putting customers first.
A few of his favoured one liners included:
“What have airports ever done for us?” and “Don’t employ dragons”.

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Customers: At Your Service
Following on quite nicely from David Speakman, after tea we heard from Stuart Newman at Expedia. He spoke about the evolution of their approach to Customer Experience @ Expedia, how to turn little acorns to big oaks, the value equation and Corporate Culture.

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Emotional Intelligence: Psychology of Motivation, Negotiation & Profit
We came to a close with Dr Rob Yeung of Talentspace who led yet another interactive and thought provoking session that, no doubt, left people with lots of food for thought.

Our Summit has been dubbed the industry’s ‘must attend’ event. But it is also thirsty work, so at the end of the day, we held our drinks reception in the Diamond Club where pre-poured martini’s were waiting for us (shaken, not stirred)


Thank you to all who came and supported the Summit for our fifth year. We hope you enjoyed the day and took away some valuable insights.

*An extra thanks goes out to all who stayed and mingled at the pub after too!
(no more photos from this point on…)* 

If you have any questions about the Summit, please do not hesitate to contact Ann-Marie on

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