Gatwick’s Commercial department analyses and manages the relationships with the airport’s vast number of stakeholders, from airlines to retail partners, car parks to train companies.
Who are we?
The team works constantly to improve the passenger experience across the airport, by developing new offers and maintaining high standards of customer care. At the same time, we're always on the look-out for innovative ways to generate revenue and encourage passengers to fly from Gatwick.
How do we work?
There are many different teams working together to maximise Gatwick’s commercial opportunities. From business development to airline relations, car parking, marketing and brand, retail, real estate and roads - the team really does touch on all areas of the airport.
The focus is providing a great passenger experience, as well as generating revenue and delivering growth for the company.
Airline Relations works directly with airlines to drive revenue and passenger growth, in particular by focusing on long-haul markets and maximising existing route opportunities.
Meanwhile Retail is responsible for all the shops and restaurants within the airport. The team chooses and facilitate new brands at Gatwick, monitoring their performance and making sure they are offering what our passengers want.
As a major international airport, Gatwick has much more going on than the core business of flight arrivals and departures. The spread of commercial interests and activities are those you would expect in a small town, and we need specialists to reflect that.
The airport’s commercial teams work within an ever-changing environment with new challenges emerging all the time. The endless opportunities to think creatively, while keeping focus on the bigger picture, make Gatwick a uniquely rewarding place to work.
Stephen King, Head of Airline Relations
I joined Gatwick after 11 years working on the other side of the fence at Virgin Atlantic. I’ve bought my knowledge of how airlines work and am using it to encourage more of them to fly from Gatwick. Before it was about getting bums on seats, now it’s about wheels on tarmac.
Technology offers us lots of opportunities. There's state-of-the-art aircraft flying further and more efficiently, opening up new routes, with low operating costs and therefore lower fares.
One of our biggest challenges is how to encourage our airlines to bring more passengers to the airport within a limited runway resource. The team works a year ahead planning, forecasting and negotiating with airlines to get the best possible solution for both them and for Gatwick.
Long-haul is a key focus for us, as bigger aircraft carry more passengers. London and the UK is a top destination for any overseas carrier, so it's our chance to open up connections by getting airlines to choose to fly from Gatwick. One of our recent coups saw Gatwick secure double daily flights to Doha with Qatar Airways.
It’s an incredibly exciting time to be working at Gatwick.
Helen Teschauer, Food & Beverage Development Manager
When I was invited to interview at Gatwick I remember looking at the job description and thinking “this is really interesting – I didn’t know jobs like this existed as part of operating an airport". And now I’ve got one of them!
I’m responsible for identifying the F&B operators and brands we would like to bring in to our terminals, looking at passenger needs and using my industry knowledge to identify the most appropriate partners for our airport. I then lead the tender process and commercial negotiations before helping to get the unit from a drawing on paper to doors opening. I love that it’s both a creative and commercial role and that I’m so close to the operation.
I led on the development of Jamie’s Diner, and the satisfaction you get from seeing it all come together is huge. Before I came to Gatwick, although I was based in the UK, I used to travel two or three times a week. Now I spend as much time wearing a hard hat on site, as I do a suit in the office. It makes you feel really connected with the whole operation.
Working in F&B in my role at Gatwick is all about hospitality and making people happy. It’s always really fast-paced and I love every minute of it.