In September this year, the international travel agency, Thomas Cook UK had shut down after failing to secure $250 million in funding. The collapse of the travel agency affected nearly 600,000 travelers who stranded in foreign places, TIME reported. However, this did not affect the Indian bureau of the parent company, Thomas Cook India. In a series of events around Thomas Cook UK, new information has unveiled that Thomas Cook India tries to acquire the rights of travel agency’s offices in India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius.
Thomas Cook India lately proclaimed that it has inked an agreement with Thomas Cook UK’s special managers to acquire the rights of the bureaus in India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius, reported Business Today.
“Thomas Cook (India) Ltd (TCIL) has signed an agreement with AlixPartners, Thomas Cook UK's appointed Special Managers for the complete ownership of the brand name across these markets, for a one-time payment of INR 13.9 crore,” Business Today reported citing the regulatory filing.
"I am delighted that we have been able to sign an agreement to acquire the rights to the iconic Thomas Cook brand across India, Mauritius & Sri Lanka. The brand is one of the most respected names in the travel services space and one that we at Thomas Cook India have operated uninterrupted for 138 years since 1881," Madhavan Menon, Chairman & Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd, said in the company’s official statement.
Earlier on, TCIL had paid an annual brand license fee of INR 2 crore to the parent firm until 2024 for utilizing its brand name.
By acquiring rights from Thomas Cook UK, TCIL will have exclusive rights of the brand, Thomas Cook in the unaffected regions viz. India, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius. With this, TCIL can operate travel services under the same brand, which has carried out its services for 138 years in India.
Furthermore, the acquired rights will last forever as the pact issues brand rights in perpetuity and thus, the company can employ brand in perpetuity on a royalty-free basis, reported the cited media agency.
The concord will also prevent new companies from entering the market by utilizing Thomas Cook UK’s brand name.
Thomas Cook UK, which is one of the oldest travel agencies across the globe, collapsed in September this year. The primary cause of its failure is said to be ill-timed business deals, debt piling over 10 years, failing to get traction from Gen Z and other related issues.
With the shutdown of Thomas Cook UK, the bureaus of India, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius remain unaffected and operated normally. The company’s official gave a clear picture by unveiling that the bureaus of India, Sri Lanka, and Mauritius had not affected by Thomas Cook's collapse.
“With regard to recent media reports pertaining to the sale of the Thomas Cook Global brand to Fosun of China, it is imperative to clarify that the reported sale of the Global Thomas Cook brand to Fosun of China does not include the regions of India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius,” Mr.Madhavan Menon, Chairman, and Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. told BusinessEx earlier.
Besides operating Thomas Cook, TCIL administers various other businesses in B2B and B2C domains. The traveling brands that the company is presently operating are SOTC, SITA, TCI, Asian Trails, Australian Tours Management, Desert Adventures, Allied T Pro, Luxe Asia, Private Safaris East & South Africa, Kuoni Hong Kong, Sterling Holidays, TC Travel, and Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging (DEI), with strategic investments in Ithaka by Travel Junkie Solutions.
On September 30, 2019, TCIL had an aggregate capital comprising cash and bank deposits, of INR 1,088.3 crore. Unlike Thomas Cook UK, TCIL does not have any debts. It generates an annual free cash flow of nearly INR 200 crore.