Travel management company executives said they were happy that the International Air Transport Association engaged them during a first-of-its-kind meeting in Geneva last week. The gathering kicked off IATA’s new Global Travel Management Executive Council.

The effort was a long time coming, some said as they pushed aside their complaints to focus on the positives. So what was the outcome? Nothing concrete, sources said.

According to an agenda obtained by The Company Dime, IATA discussed with the TMC representatives ways the organization could develop its relationship with them beyond its role as a billing and settlement provider. Agenda topics included the perception, role and priorities of IATA and overviews of data solutions, the New Distribution Capability and One Order.

“Recent programs such as NDC have demonstrated the need and the value of collaborating together on a broader agenda,” according to the document. “IATA would like to use this meeting to better understand TMC current challenges and priorities and to explore areas of possible future cooperation.”

The program featured IATA director general and CEO Alexandre de Juniac, SVP for financial and distribution services Aleks Popovich, director for transformation, financial and distribution services Eric Léopold and NDC program director Yanik Hoyles. IATA is a client of consultancy Festive Road, whose Caroline Strachan also presented.

Attendees included an antitrust attorney and representatives of Altour, ARC, ATPI/Direct Travel, BCD Travel, Capita Travel and Events, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Clarity, Click Travel, Connexus Travel (formerly Swire), Continent Express, Corporate Travel Management, FCM Travel Solutions, HRG and Travel and Transport.

IATA has been meeting for years with corporate travel buyers about its new initiatives.

Disclosure: The Company Dime has a marketing and content partnership with Festive Road.

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