Barry Liben, CEO of top U.S. travel agency Travel Leaders Group, announced today he will step down from his position to serve once again at Tzell Travel Group. Tzell Travel Group is a brand owned by Travel Leaders Group.
Liben will be replaced as CEO at Travel Leaders Group by Ninan Chacko, who is returning to the travel industry after six years as CEO of PR Newswire. Before PR Newswire, he served as chief commercial officer at travel technology provider Worldspan and worked in a variety of roles at Sabre.
Chacko will also join the Travel Leaders Group board of directors, while Liben will retain his position on the board.
“After very thoughtful consideration – particularly during the last few months when I’ve been reminded on a daily basis just how much I’ve loved returning to my roots at Tzell, where I first began in 1977 – I’ve decided to step away from my role as CEO for all of Travel Leaders Group and instead devote my energies and attention exclusively to Tzell as its CEO,” said Liben in a message to employees.
Liben will take the reins as president and CEO of Tzell Travel Group after serving at Travel Leaders Group since 2008. Under Liben, Travel Leaders Group expanded internationally into Australia, Canada, Greece, and Ireland while increasing its total sales from $7 billion to more than $20 billion.
Travel Leaders Group now has 6,500 global agencies composed of more than 45,000 agents. Its brands include Travel Leaders, Nexion, Vacation.com, Tzell Travel Group, and Protravel.