Frosch was growing significantly when we profiled the company in our June 2010 edition. Annual revenue was sitting pretty at $600 million plus, with 30 locations around the country and 1,400 employees. Today, that revenue sits at $1.2 billion. Not bad for a travel agency that started in Houston in 1972 with just four employees.
The momentum for growth was spurred when Richard Leibman, now the company’s chairman, bought the agency and subsequently appointed his son, who was practicing medicine at the time, president & CEO. Bryan had the vision to expand the company nationally through acquisitions and that he did on many an occasion; one of particular note was Linden Travel, a mega Manhattan agency, which gave Frosch a significant East Coast presence. Bryan’s sister, Lara, who had been practicing law, joined the company in 2004 and Frosch became a full family affair.
The vacation side of Frosch (the company has a significant travel management division and corporate travel accounts for two thirds of its business) got a major boost last year when Marc Kazlauskas was named president of its leisure business; having served as president of Insight Vacations for the last 12 years. He’s now helping with a strategy that has seen Frosch expand by three acquisitions a year since 2010.
Frosch has also expanded considerably on a worldwide basis by opening many Global Centers of Excellence, which are offices that serve as an operational hub for a region.
“We are always looking for people who share the same values and who are interested in long-term commitment to the industry,” says Lara Leibman of Frosch’s active acquisition efforts.
Now EVP and based in New York, she is focused on building and maintaining Frosch’s hotel program. Recent travels have taken her to Singapore, Bali, Myanmar, Malaysia, Brazil, Paris, and Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in Israel.
“A standout was my visit to Iguazu Falls, which was simply breathtaking,” she notes. “I was fortunate enough to view incredible rainbows amongst these amazing waterfalls. Belmond Hotel das Cataratas and Belmond Copacabana Palace Hotel both shined, and the unrivalled location of das Cataratas in the midst of Brazil’s Iguazu National Park was uniquely rewarding.”
In Israel, The Norman Tel Aviv caught her eye, and she sees it as a great addition to the city’s offerings. “Set in one of the trendiest neighborhoods in Tel Aviv near Rothschild Avenue and only a 10- to15-minute walk from the beach, this lovely boutique hotel with only 50 rooms and suites is still fairly new, yet it’s evidently well known by the trendy and upscale locals who frequently dine in its excellent F&B outlets,” she reports. “With all the latest technology, the rooms have an eclectic design reminiscent of the 1920s and a Bauhaus aesthetic.”
Meanwhile, the family dynamic thrives at Frosch: Chairman Richard Leibman, who acquired that tiny Frosch agency years ago, is still based in Houston and works closely with leisure agents and suppliers in an advisory role. Bryan Leibman forges on as president & CEO and no doubt will expand Frosch further; he continues to work with a strong management team spread across the company’s co-headquarters to look for growth opportunities and strategic enhancements.