Skift Take

Sabre's leadership team has been like an endurance runner in its strategy of patching up the security of the company's software, breaking down internal business silos, and moving Sabre's systems to the more stable cloud. This latest restructuring is the next phase.

Sabre announced a restructuring of its airline and agency-focused businesses on Thursday in a move that includes about 800 layoffs.

The move follows the approximately 400 workers that left the travel technology company in April from voluntary severance and voluntary early retirement, a spokesperson said, adding that Sabre has more than 9,000 workers worldwide.

Recent stay-at-home orders have gutted the travel industry, which drives revenue for the Southlake, Texas-based company.

“While we had to put certain initiatives and technology investments on hold in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, we remain steadfast in our commitment to helping our customers operate more efficiently, drive revenue, and offer personalized travel experiences that benefit travelers, travel suppliers, and agencies,” said president and CEO Sean Menke in a statement. “We have taken this opportunity to accelerate the organizational changes we began in 2018 to address the changing travel landscape.”

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Menke repeated his credo that Sabre needs to focus on providing “retailing, distribution, and fulfillment” services to airlines and hotels. He reaffirmed the company would continue to with its effort since last fall to pursue the low-cost carrier market with passenger and operational software from its acquisition of Raddix.

Sabre will also push ahead with building a property management system that could be used by hotel chains, though its initial partner Accor may be slower in participating now due to the crisis. Sabre plans to migrate its information technology systems to Google Cloud’s services, which include advanced data analytics.

Sabre has recently been tussling with Lufthansa Airlines Group over how airlines distribute tickets to travel agencies. In April, it abandoned a bid to acquire the technology company Farelogix. Sabre’s revenues have suffered due to the crisis.

Sabre’s stock price rose in early morning trading at a pace above the U.S. market index average for the morning.

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Tags: coronavirus, coronavirus recovery, layoffs, sabre, sabre airline solutions, Sabre Hospitality Solutions

Photo credit: Sabre president and CEO Sean Menke speaks at a company conference in 2019. Sabre

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