Thomas Cook (India) Ltd said on Wednesday it plans to sell a 5.42% stake in unit Quess Corp Ltd for Rs 600 crore ($92.5 million) as part of efforts to meet regulatory norms and repay debt.
The travel services provider will offload 7.5 million shares of Quess at Rs 800 apiece through an offer for sale, it said in a stock-exchange filing. It will own 51.56% of Quess after the stake sale.
Simultaneously, Quess chairman and CEO Ajit Issac will sell 1 million shares of the business support services provider for Rs 80 crore.
After the sale, Quess promoters—Thomas Cook and Isaac—will own 75.38% of the company. This a tad higher than the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s regulations that requires promoters to reduce their stake to 75%.
Thomas Cook, majority owned by India-born Canadian billionaire Prem Watsa’s Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd, said that it will maintain a controlling stake in Quess Corp.
The stake sale is also aimed at retiring its long-term debt, which will improve profitability, said Madhavan Menon, chairman and managing director, Thomas Cook India Group.
Fairfax had acquired a majority stake in Thomas Cook in 2012.
Thomas Cook acquired Quess Corp in 2013.