[ $35 BILLION INDUSTRY IN TEXAS ]
to travel sector
won’t heal fast
See TEXAS on Page 38
controversial — not to mention
valuable — enterprises.
Known for his calm, level-headed approach to management, Khosrowshahi, 48, will immediately
provide a stark contrast to his
41-year-old predecessor, Uber’s confrontational co-founder Travis Kalanick.
But anyone expecting cuddlier leadership
at the world’s largest ride-hailing company
By Danny King
In moving from the relative calm
of Expedia’s corporate culture to
the chaos that has been the defining feature of Uber Technologies in
recent months, Dara Khosrowshahi
is betting he can turn around one
of the industry’s most troubled and
A leap from Expedia’s calm to Uber’s chaos
could be in for a surprise. Despite his understated demeanor, Khosrowshahi, in his years
at the helm of Expedia, proved to be a hard-driving CEO who eliminated much of his
competition through aggressive
pricing strategies and shrewd
In addition to vanquishing many competitors, Expedia, under 12 years of Khosrowshahi’s leadership, gradually pulled market share
See KHOSROWSHAHI on Page 40
By the Travel Weekly staff
While the nation focused largely on the human tragedy unfolding in Houston last week,
analysts and suppliers thousands of miles
away began tallying the cost of Hurricane
Harvey to Texas’ economy, including to its
Generating $35.2 billion last year, the
Texas travel industry accounted for just over
2% of the state’s total gross domestic product (GDP), about on par with the contribution from its electronics and agriculture sectors. Of all the state’s industries, only energy
made a significantly greater contribution to
The pain was felt across the spectrum of
travel enterprises, from cruise lines to airlines, from hotels to car rental companies.
Flights and cruises were cancelled, airports,
hotels and ports were closed, and thousands
of rental cars were presumed damaged or destroyed by the storm.
What’s more, Harvey forced the shutdown of multiple oil refineries, which was
expected to raise the prices of all refined
fuels, from diesel oil and gasoline to jet fuel.
The least refined petroleum product is the
bunker oil that fuels most cruise ships. While
the price of gasoline jumped six cents a gallon in the first five days after the storm hit,
efforts to get comment from the cruise lines
on bunker fuel supplies and prices were unsuccessful.
By late last week, Harvey had already
caused a significant jump in jet fuel prices.
The Gulf Coast region accounts for half of
all jet fuel produced in the U.S., and 16% of
the nation’s refining capacity was still down
as of Aug. 31.
According to the price-reporting firm S&P
Global Platts, jet fuel prices, not accounting
Guest columnist: Leland Pillsbury
The airlines’ rules-based culture lies at the heart
of its problem with customer satisfaction. 12
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