After the sale of 75% of “Biblio-Globus” to Sheremetyevo International Airport, the general director of the largest tour operator in Russia will change. On November 25, sources in the tourism industry and three airlines told Izvestia about this. From the beginning of December, the top manager of Aeroflot, Rinat Asmatullov, will become the head of the tour operator, replacing Larisa Pyatikhatko in this position, two interlocutors indicated.
According to Izvestia’s source at Aeroflot, on November 30, Rinat Asmatullov has his last working day. Since 2019, he has headed the sales department at the airline, is an advisor to the carrier’s deputy general director for strategy, service and marketing, Andrey Panov. Prior to that, Asmatullov worked as deputy commercial director at low-budget Pobeda from the beginning of its foundation (in 2014).
The appointment of a manager from the airline to the position of the head of the tour operator is a very correct decision, says Izvestia’s interlocutor on the travel market. According to him, such a director will definitely be effective.
After the deal with Sheremetyevo, the administrative resource of Aeroflot, its proximity to the state and air transportation are very significant in the project for the further development of Biblio-Globus. In the tour package and the tour operator’s service itself, transportation makes up about 70% of the cost and significance, and it is often decisive and dominant in the position of the tour operator and its share in tourist destinations: obtaining admissions, frequencies and slots, forming a route network, etc. Biblio-Golubus received all the best admissions, slots and the main pandemic quotas for international tourist destinations, and Aeroflot was the only Russian airline to fly to a large number of international destinations during the pandemic, the source recalled in the tourist market.
Izvestia sent inquiries to Sheremetyevo, Biblio-Globus and Aeroflot.
It became known on August 12 that Sheremetyevo had agreed to purchase 75% of the largest Russian tour operator Biblio-Globus. Then the director of public relations of Sheremetyevo, Anna Zakharenkova, said that the deal would be a significant step in achieving the strategic goals of the Sheremetyevo group by creating conditions for attracting and increasing tourist passenger traffic. According to her, it will also allow optimizing the use of the infrastructure of the terminal complex and the airfield.
On September 29, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) of Russia approved the Sheremetyevo airport’s petition for the deal. On October 18, an agreement was signed on the acquisition of a 75% stake in the authorized capital of Turoperator BG LLC, and on November 16 the name of this legal entity was changed to Biblio-Globus Turoperator LLC, following from the SPARK system.
Touroperator BG LLC was 100% owned by Yulia Tugolukova, who together with her husband Alexander Tugolukov in 1994 founded the Biblio-Globus group. After the deal with Sheremetyevo, she became a minority shareholder of the tour operator with a 25% stake. According to a Izvestia source, Tugollukova will remain the chairman of the board of directors and will retain almost her entire team.
Interaction between Biblio-Globus and Aeroflot began after the bankruptcy of Transaero in 2015. Then the strategic partner of the tour operator instead of Transaero became the Rossiya airline (a subsidiary of Aeroflot), which received the planes of the bankrupt carrier, including the double-deck Boeing 747. In the spring of 2020, Rossiya relocated from Vnukovo to Sheremetyevo.