Partnership structure: even if most destinations –cultural destinations- are driven by many DMCs and one DMO, there may be many different formulas to structure their relationship in terms of partnership. In most cases the DMO is controlled by the government, but there may be different levels of participation from the private operators (DMCs) in the strategic direction, funding and management of the DMO. In some cases the operators are just listened to during the definition of the destination strategy in order to consider their valuable inputs, whereas some other models are more integrative. More integrative models are those where both the private sector and government provide funding for the DMO activities, both have the power to appoint members of the DMO board, and have to agree on the DMO strategic direction and management. In some cases, the DMO is exclusively run by the private operators.

Ownership structure: even if most destinations are run by many operators of all kinds –accommodation, activities, food & beverage, transportation, etc.-, in some destinations there is one operator dominating the business, and in some cases –ski resorts, theme parks, etc.- the destination has only one operator, or many operators belonging to the same owner or holding. Regarding the composition of the operators’ ownership, there are many models:

  • Integrated resorts: all businesses are controlled by the same owner. This is the case of some theme parks, ski resorts, golf resorts, etc.
  • Resort based destinations: one resort is the main attraction but many other operators can also take advantage of the tourist flows.
  • Cultural destinations: their natural and/or cultural heritage is the main attraction, with many operators of different sizes but without a dominant one.
  • Destinations 3.0: it may correspond to different kinds of attractions, and the ownership may be shared between government, investors and small stakeholders, in partnership with other small businesses and other types of organizations.


Would you consider other variables concerning partnership and ownership?

Posted by Jordi Pera

Jordi Pera is an economist passionate about tourism, strategy, marketing, sustainability, business modelling and open innovation. He has international experience in marketing, intelligence research, strategy planning, business model innovation and lecturing, having developed most of his career in the tourism industry. Jordi is keen on tackling innovation and strategy challenges that require imagination, entail thoughtful analysis and are to be solved with creative solutions.

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