Thomas Cook takeover deal could lead to reopening of Galashiels travel shop

Galtero Lara
Octubre 12, 2019

It comes as news yesterday (Wednesday 9th October) that 2,500 employees in the firm's high street shops across the country will have their jobs saved after Hays Travel stepped in to purchase the stores.

Husband and wife team Irene and John Hays, who own the travel agent, said the company burned the midnight oil, signing the deal to buy the shops at 11.53pm on Tuesday.

"I'm particularly proud to be able to commit to offering over 50 Thomas Cook captains the opportunity to join TUI Airways and continue to fly customers on their holidays".

However, Hays has said that they would have to "consider the future of under-performing shops" in towns where branches would overlap.

Hays Travel is a private company, jointly owned and managed by John Hays, managing director, and Irene Hays, chair of the Hays Travel Group.

Hays said that as Thomas Cook's largest third-party agent he met with executives from the doomed company a week before it went under and left "feeling reassured" that it would survive.

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Thomas Cook was placed in compulsory liquidation 23 September, upon which the Official Receiver was appointed by the court as liquidator.

"The web was their (Thomas Cook's) enemy, whereas a Hays Travel member of staff would say the web was their friend", he said.

KPMG partner and joint special manager of Thomas Cook's retail division Jim Tucker said: "This is an extremely positive outcome, and we are delighted to have secured this agreement".

"I'm very proud of the fantastic team who have helped me build Hays Travel over nearly 40 years and they have worked tirelessly over the last couple of weeks to bring this about".

The Official Liquidator, when asked by AFP about the outlook for the sale of Thomas Cook's remaining assets, declined to comment - but added they would be sold "in the best interests" of its creditors.

"I'm very proud of the fantastic team who have helped me build Hays Travel over nearly 40 years, and they have worked tirelessly over the last couple of weeks to bring this about". It employs 1900 people and achieved a turnover of more than £1 billion last year, which saw the Hays share £1 million with its employees, who each received £100 for every year they had worked at the company.

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