TUI Group plans to sell specialist adventure, education holiday unit

Company will focus on main revenue-generating tourism business

Photograph: Axel Seidemann/Bloomberg News

Photograph: Axel Seidemann/Bloomberg News


European tourism group TUI said it planned to sell its specialist group of adventure and education holiday brands, leaving it to focus on its main revenue-generating tourism business after it sold Hotelbeds last month.

TUI, which on Wednesday confirmed that it was on track to deliver underlying earnings growth of at least 10 per cent in its current financial year, said that the specialist brands did not fit with its main holiday and cruise group.

Separately, it said it would expand the presence of its main holiday and cruise group in France through a deal to acquire Canada-owned Transat’s French tour operating unit for €55 million.

Selling the specialist group, which comprises more than 50 brands which had sales of €1.8 billion last year, would be the best way to maximise value for TUI’s shareholders, the company said.

The disposal would be the latest move by management to reshape the tourism giant after it was created in 2014 by the merger of London-listed TUI Travel and German majority owner TUI AG.

A year ago, TUI combined its tour operating, hotel and cruise ship arms to form its main tourism business, creating a unit which accounted for almost 85 percent of revenues in its 2014-15 financial year.

That left the Hotelbeds and specialist units as separate entities. It sold hotel room wholesaler Hotelbeds in April to private equity group Cinven and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in a deal worth €1.165 billion.

TUI also owns a little more than 12 per cent of shipping group Hapag-Lloyd.