Maritime Travel Inc. began with a single storefront, called Maritime Travel, in 1949. Since then, we've become the largest independent travel agency in Canada. Today, our retail operations consist of over 114 locations from coast to coast with 18 locations branded LeGrow's Travel in Newfoundland and Labrador, several branded Voyages Maritime in Quebec and Northern New Brunswick and the remainder branded Maritime Travel right across the country. Combined, our retail operations generate annual sales of over $300 million and employ over 450 people.
On May 16, 2002, we changed our name from Maritime Marlin Travel to Maritime Travel. When we originally affiliated with Marlin Travel in 1986 to provide our customers with a national network, we gained the ability to use the "Marlin" name within Atlantic Canada. This affiliation served us well for many years. However, with our acquisition of The Bay Travel in 2002, now Maritime Travel @ the Bay giving us locations nationwide, we no longer needed this affiliation to meet customers' needs across Canada. Maritime Travel better reflects who we are - a Maritime-owned and headquartered company with a truly national reach.
In December 2009, the company hired 36 senior travel counsellors who had been with BCAA travel prior to BCAA closing its travel operations. Between 2009 and 2013, there were numerous acquisitions in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario, including ATCO Travel in the fall of 2010.
Maritime Travel Inc. is also committed to staying one step ahead of our competition in the ever-changing travel industry. We believe that good people are particularly critical to our ongoing success. Hiring the best staff and providing them with attractive compensation packages and benefits has helped us to build and maintain a highly educated and experienced team of experts. In fact, many of our staff have been with us for over 10 years. Maritime Travel Inc. also provides extensive training programs for all our staff, and we continuously invest in leading-edge technology to stay competitive. Many of the technology solutions we have incorporated have had a significant impact on all aspects of our service, from operational efficiencies in the retail shops to innovative solutions for our business travelers, like online booking tools.
Recognized for its leadership and employee satisfaction, Maritime Travel Inc. was named as one of the Best Companies to Work for in Canada for 3 consecutive years by Globe and Mail's Report on Business Magazine and one of the Best Companies to work for by Aon Hewitt for 3 consecutive years. Maritime Travel has been recognized as one of Canada's Best Managed Companies for 17 consecutive years, achieving platinum status the past 11 years.
We are a fully integrated travel company specializing in all aspects of travel, including developing, marketing, distributing travel products and services.