HK’s Fosun Tourism set to acquire world’s oldest travel company

Thomas Cook Group – the well-known British travel operator and world’s oldest travel company – has agreed to key rescue package terms that will see Hong Kong’s Fosun Tourism take over its tour operations and creditor banks and bondholders acquire its airline, according to a Reuters report.

The company that introduced to the world to package tours has had to fight hard to stay afloat with increasing coemption in popular destinations, high debt levels, and hot summer in 2018, which reduced its last-minute bookings, the report added. The company’s debt burden meant that it has to sell 3 million holidays a year just to pay the interest, the company said recently.

In July earlier this year, the company announced that it was looking at new investments from shareholder Fosun Tourism, which would see the Hong Kong group take control of the business, along with its lenders whose debt would be converted into equity.

As per the terms announced today, Fosun will invest contribute $552 million of new money in return for at least 75% of the tour operator business and 25% of the group’s airline.

Thomas Cook’s lending banks and bondholders will stump up a further $552 million and convert their existing debt to equity, giving them in total about 75% of the airline and up to 25% in the tour operator business, the group said.

According to the company, the recapitalisation plan will result in a marked dilution in the existing shareholders’ interests but agreed that this way the only way to secure the group’s future for all its stakeholders



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