Economy

Thomas Cook supports 22000 customers affected by Hurricane Irma in "challenging" month

Thomas Cook supports 22000 customers affected by Hurricane Irma in

As part of the new partnership, Thomas Cook has acquired from LMEY a 42% stake in Aldiana, a premium club and activity-focused tour operator and hotel management company based in Germany.

Thomas Cook has unveiled a tie-up with Swiss-based hotel property development firm LMEY Investments as it strengthens plans to grow its own-brand hotel portfolio. The two companies have agreed to contribute five owned and directly-managed hotel properties between them, for a combined value of approximately £150m.

The partnership will be used to "develop the platform into a fund focused on acquiring a pipeline of further hotel and resort assets across Thomas Cook's destination markets", the company said in a statement on Tuesday (26 September).

Thomas Cook Group plc (TCKGY.PK, TCG.L) announced that Group CFO Michael Healy has made a decision to retire.

Total summer 2017 bookings were 11% higher across the group.

Thomas Cook operates or franchises over 180 hotels in 17 countries, with 11 new hotels added this summer.

The Winter 2017/18 programme was confirmed as 37% sold, similar to the same period a year ago, with overall Group bookings up 3%, supported mainly by a recovery in demand for Turkey and North Africa, with average selling prices up 2%.

United Kingdom bookings were up 5%, against a strong comparative period, with pricing up 3%, while Northern Europe bookings and pricing up 6%, and Continental Europe bookings 4% ahead and pricing in line with previous year.

Peter Fankhauser, chief executive of Thomas Cook, said: "The last month has been operationally challenging as our teams took care of the thousands of customers in the Caribbean and Florida impacted by Hurricane Irma".

Summer 2018 has seen early bookings and pricing ahead of a year ago, reflecting a good performance from the United Kingdom and Northern Europe in particular.

The cost of travelling to Spain is expected to rise by an additional 5% to 10% next year due to the weakness of sterling, even as other Mediterranean destinations regain the favour of holidaymakers, said Thomas Cook.

Laith Khalaf, senior analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, also underlined the importance of the deal within the company's long-term strategy. The Group continues to expect full year underlying operating profit to be in line with current market expectations.



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