British Tour Operator Thomas Cook Group Plc has finalized plans to sell its 77.1% stake in travel and tour operator Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. The sale is part of a worldwide restructuring move that has the travel services company shuttering stores and selling off valuable assets in a bid to retire debt of up to $1.4 billion. The UK parent reported a pre-tax loss of £151.7 million ($241.2 million) in the three months ended December 31, 2011, compared with a loss of £99.3 million a year earlier even as revenues increased 3% to £1.86 billion.
“If the offers are attractive, the company will consider selling the stake and use the proceeds to continue to strengthen the group’s balance sheet. TCIL is a strong business, operating in an attractive market. Both the business and the market are growing and Thomas Cook will only sell its stake if a compelling offer is received,” Sam Weihagen, group CEO of Thomas Cook, was quoted as saying.
A sale would mark the second time Thomas Cook has left the Indian market. In 2005, it sold the TCIL to Dubai Investment Group, only to buy it back in 2008.
Thomas Cook India operates 153 locations in 70 cities with a workforce of 2,700 people.
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