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Cox & Kings sells 100% of issued, outstanding shares of Explore Worldwide Limited

Explore Worldwide Limited includes the brands Explore – soft adventure tours – and RegalDive – diving adventure specialist. The company generated net revenues of GBP 11.2 million (Rs 112 crore) and EBITDA of GBP 2.3 million (Rs 23 crore) in FY15 e...

, ET Bureau|
Dec 02, 2015, 02.30 AM IST
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Explore Worldwide Limited includes the brands Explore – soft adventure tours – and RegalDive – diving adventure specialist. The company generated net revenues of GBP 11.2 million (Rs 112 crore) and EBITDA of GBP 2.3 million (Rs 23 crore) in FY15 ended March.
Explore Worldwide Limited includes the brands Explore – soft adventure tours – and RegalDive – diving adventure specialist. The company generated net revenues of GBP 11.2 million (Rs 112 crore) and EBITDA of GBP 2.3 million (Rs 23 crore) in FY15 ended March.
MUMBAI: Travel and leisure company Cox & Kings has – through its Holidaybreak PLC subsidiary – sold 100% of the issued and outstanding shares of Explore Worldwide Limited for GBP 25.8 million (Rs 258 crore) to Hotelplan UK Group.

Explore Worldwide Limited includes the brands Explore – soft adventure tours – and RegalDive – diving adventure specialist. The company generated net revenues of GBP 11.2 million (Rs 112 crore) and EBITDA of GBP 2.3 million (Rs 23 crore) in FY15 ended March.

"There has been a fair amount of consolidation in the adventure Travel space in the last few years, with the larger players buying out mid- and small-sized adventure travel players, or the signing of exclusive partnerships between key distributors and vendors. This left us with a choice between investing heavily to compete in this segment of the market, or to sell out and focus on the other areas of our business," CFO Anil Khandelwal told ET.

Peter Kerkar, Director, Cox & Kings, said, "The sale of this business helps us to further increase focus on our three key verticals- Leisure, Education and hybrid hotels (Meininger)."

The funds will "substantially used to retire debt, Khandelwal said. The company annual repayment schedule is at Rs 400 to Rs 500 crore. Its net debt as on Sept 30 stood at Rs 2,384 crore, said a spokesman. Last year June the company had sold the camping division of Holidaybreak for a total consideration of GBP 89.2 million pounds (Rs 892 crore) to Homair Vacances.

But the company has been expanding too. Last month, it acquired UK-based online hotel booking company Late Rooms Ltd (UK) ("LateRooms") for GBP 8.5 million.
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