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Collapse of UK Tour Company Doesn't Affect Us: Thomas Cook India Issues Clarification

In August 2012, 77 percent of Thomas Cook UK's stake in Indian operations was acquired by Fairfax Financial Holdings (Fairfax), a Canada based multinational, the company explained, adding that with this, Thomas Cook UK ceased to be a promoter of the company.

News18.com

Updated:September 23, 2019, 11:08 AM IST
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Collapse of UK Tour Company Doesn't Affect Us: Thomas Cook India Issues Clarification
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After the inevitable collapse Thomas Cook that failed to secure its rescue funding, its Indian wing which operates as a separate entity, has clarified that it will not be affected by the potential bust of the British tour company.

More than 600,000 vacationers who booked through tour operator Thomas Cook were on edge Sunday, wondering if they will be able to get home, as one of the world's oldest and biggest travel companies teetered on the edge of collapse.

However, Thomas Cook India, in a public letter issued on Monday reiterated that it is a “completely different entity” and will not be affected by the spiraling situation of the British tour company . "With the recent developments relating to the iconic British travel Company, Thomas Cook PLC, being reported in the media, it is imperative to highlight that Thomas Cook India Group is a completely different entity," it said in the notice.

In August 2012, 77 percent of Thomas Cook UK's stake in Indian operations was acquired by Fairfax Financial Holdings (Fairfax), a Canada based multinational, the company explained, adding that with this, Thomas Cook UK ceased to be a promoter of the company.

The debt-laden company, which confirmed Friday it was seeking 200 million pounds ($250 million) in funding to avoid going bust, was in talks with shareholders and creditors to stave off failure.

The British government said the return of the firm's 150,000 British customers now abroad would be the largest repatriation in its peacetime history. The process began Monday and officials warned that delays are inevitable.

Most of Thomas Cook's British customers are protected by the government-run travel insurance program, which makes sure vacationers can get home if a British-based tour operator goes under while they are abroad.

Thomas Cook's financial difficulties also raised questions about the jobs of the 22,000 people employed by the company around the world, including 9,000 in Britain.

The 178-year-old firm also operated around 600 UK stores. CAA said it had arranged an aircraft fleet for the British repatriation effort lasting two weeks beginning Monday.

Thomas Cook, which began in 1841 with a one-day train excursion in England and now operates in 16 countries, has been struggling over the past few years. It only recently raised 900 million pounds ($1.12 billion), including from leading Chinese shareholder Fosun.

In May, the company reported a debt burden of 1.25 billion pounds and cautioned that political uncertainty related to Britain's departure from the European Union had hurt demand for summer holiday travel. Heatwaves over the past couple of summers in Europe have also led many people to stay at home, while higher fuel and hotel costs have weighed on the travel business.

The company's troubles were already affecting those travelling under the Thomas Cook banner.

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