11 NOVEMBER 2019

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Thomas Cook brand goes to China

The historic Thomas Cook brand has been sold for £11m to the Chinese travel group and Club Med owner Fosun Tourism in a deal covering the Cook brand along with the hotel brands Casa Cook and Cook's Club.

Fosun chairman Qian Jiannong said: "This acquisition will enable the group to expand its tourism business building on the extensive brand awareness of Thomas Cook and the robust growth momentum of Chinese outbound tourism.”

Fosun, which was Thomas Cook's largest shareholder, had earlier agreed to put £450m into the giant travel company as part of a £900m rescue deal. It fell through when lenders demanded an extra £200m which could not be secured.

MPs on the Opposition-dominated Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, chaired by Labour MP Rachel Reeves, said last week a series of misjudgements caused Thomas Cook's demise and blamed the company’s management.

"During our inquiry, we've witnessed buck-passing and blame-shifting but precious little humility or reflection from those at the top of the business. Directors and senior management pocketed hefty sums in annual salaries and bonuses,” the report said.

The committee also noted what it called an “extraordinary lack of interest” shown by the government's Business Department leading up to the collapse.

www.fosun.com

www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-business-energy-and-industrial-strategy

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