The story begins in 2012.
Launched in 2012 by cousins Ross and David Fastuca, Locomote helps businesses reduce the cost of managing business travel by automating the process of organising, approving, and managing business travel.
In just the first two years, they were able to get a customer list that includes a host of household-names, including World Vision, Medibank and ANZ Bank.
Ross Fastuca, who is Locomote’s CEO, puts the success down to the fact that the company is aimed at an area of the corporate travel market poorly serviced by business travel providers.
While the internet has transformed the leisure market and made organising holidays a simple and stress-free experience, corporate travel management remained a neglected niche and an area where companies could realise significant savings, according to Fastuca.
Locomote’s swift success has seen it expand from a two-man, home-based affair to a thriving business, based in Melbourne, Australia.
Investors, as well as customers, have been quick to join Locomote. In late 2014, US-based travel technology giant Travelport took a stake in the company. A year later, Travelport upped its holding to become Locomote’s majority owner.
Listed on the New York Stock Exchange, the company runs reservation and payment systems for hotels and airlines. It has a presence in 180 countries and turns over an average of $US2.2 billion a year.
In 2016 Travelport bought out the remaining equity and took control of the company while the original founders, Ross and David Fastuca, stayed on for two more years, departing the company in 2018.
Having started something very special with only two people - and in six years resulting in over 150 staff operating in six countries - it was hard to say goodbye for Ross and David.
In 2019 Travelport was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange and, under a new CEO, it began selling off non-core assets. Ross and David were made aware and their entrepreneurial itch began, again.
Keeping a close eye on the industry, they noticed that nothing had changed since they left. They had big ideas that were yet to be fulfilled, so they entered into the discussion with Travelport to take back their company.
In early 2020, the world looked very different. Having experienced a global pandemic, no industry was hit harder than travel. While most in the corporate travel space were cutting costs due to the devastating effect of COVID-19, Ross and David took this opportunity to take back Locomote and to continue on its original vision - to become a global household name for making business travel hassle-free.