Thomas Cook buys remaining 24% in Sita World Travel Lanka

Thomas Cook India’s Sri Lankan subsidiary has acquired a 24% stake in Sita World Travel Lanka from minority promoters, the company said in a stock exchange filing.

With this, Thomas Cook India (TCIL) will indirectly own 100% stake in Sita World Travel Lanka, a company spokesperson said. 

While Thomas Cook Lanka, a subsidiary of Thomas Cook India, now holds 24% stake in Sita World Travel Lanka, the remaining 76% stake in the entity is held by SOTC Travel Services, which is a subsidiary of Thomas Cook India and Travel Corporation of India.  

TCIL initially picked up stakes in SOTC Travel Services when it acquired Swiss travel operator Kuoni’s travel business in India and Hong Kong for Rs 535 crore in August 2015.

TCIL had acquired Travel Corporation of India in 2007.  

Fairfax Holdings-backed Thomas Cook India has been aggressively scaling up its business via acquisitions. In February 2014, it bought Sterling Holiday Resorts for Rs 870 crore, acquiring holiday resorts across 16 destinations in India.

In February 2013, it acquired 76% in IKYA Capital Human Solutions for Rs 256 crore, to expand its business in HR staffing solutions. IKYA was rebranded as Quess Corp and its public listing earlier this year was well received by investors.

In July 2015, Thomas Cook India acquired Sri Lanka's Luxe Asia, a destination management firm, for an undisclosed sum. 

With the purchase of Kuoni’s Indian business last year, the company acquired brands such as SOTC, SITA and Distant Frontiers.

The company has decided not to integrate SOTC with Thomas Cook India and is running them independently, a Mint report said in January this year.

This is because the Thomas Cook brand may expire in 2025 and the company may choose not to renew it. It had acquired the SOTC brand following the Kuoni buyout.

In May 2012, Canada’s Fairfax acquired 77% stake in Thomas Cook India for $ 150 million.

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