New Delhi: Switzerland-based multinational travel service provider Kuoni Group has appointed Bernard Martyris as the Group chief human resources officer. He is the first non-European to be appointed at that position. He was earlier with the VFS Global as the chief of HR. VFS Global is a subsidiary of Kuoni Group. In November, the Group had appointed Zubin Karkaria as the global CEO of the company, and also Dhiren Savla was made the group CIO for the company.
Martyris is responsible for the overall Kuoni Group's HR strategy, leadership development, and talent and performance management. He joined VFS Global in 2004 and led the corporate HR function of Kuoni Group on an interim basis from 2013 till the beginning of 2015.
In his 35 years of experience handling human resources, Martyris was the first Indian HR professional to be invited to join the HR Council of the Conference Board of USA, which includes the top HR professionals of Fortune 500 companies. He was also appointed as the chairman of the HR committee of the Bombay Chamber of Commerce between 2007 and 2009. Martyris graduated from Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI) in 1976 and went on to hold long standing senior management positions at the Oberoi Group and at the Taj Group of Hotels. He also served as an independent director on the board of Tata Coffee in 2003.
As part of the business restructuring exercise, Kuoni sold its leisure tours and inbound tours division in India and Hong Kong to Thomas Cook for Rs 535 crore in August. Also, the three divisions of Kuoni Group will be made more autonomous and accountable for their respective businesses. The 109-year old Switzerland-based group is a household name in the tourism industry and is valued at well over 5 billion Swiss francs.