Travel services firm Thomas Cook (India) on Tuesday said it has entered into a pact with Thomas Cook UK's appointed special managers to acquire the rights of the iconic brand for India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius markets.
Thomas Cook (India) Ltd (TCIL) has signed an agreement with AlixPartners, Thomas Cook UK's appointed Special Managers for the complete ownership of the brand name across these markets, for a one-time payment of Rs 13.9 crore, the company said in a regulatory filing.
"I am delighted that we have been able to sign an agreement to acquire the rights to the iconic Thomas Cook brand across India, Mauritius & Sri Lanka. The brand is one of the most respected names in the travel services space and one that we at Thomas Cook India have operated uninterrupted for 138 years since 1881," said Madhavan Menon, Chairman & Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd.
TCIL was previously contracted to pay an annual brand licence fee of Rs 2 crore to Thomas Cook UK until 2024 for usage of the brand.
"So when this very attractive investment opportunity of complete ownership of the brand name across these markets, for a onetime payment of Rs 139 million came up, it truly was an opportunity we had to grab!," Menon said.
TCIL's acquisition of the exclusive ownership of the Thomas Cook brand in these markets means that TCIL can now use the iconic travel services brand name that they have operated for 138 years in India.
The agreement also ensures brand use rights in perpetuity and means that TCIL can use the brand in perpetuity on a royalty-free basis.
Moreover, this move by TCIL also prevents possible new entrants into these markets, using the brand name.
In addition to Thomas Cook, the Thomas Cook India Group operates leading B2C and B2B travel brands including SOTC, TCI, SITA, Asian Trails, Allied T Pro (ATP), Australian Tours Management (ATM), Desert Adventures, Luxe Asia, Kuoni Hong Kong, TC Travel, Private Safaris East & South Africa, Sterling Holidays and Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging (DEI), with strategic investments in Ithaka by Travel Junkie Solutions.
The Thomas Cook India Group has a cash and bank deposits balances of Rs 1,088.3 crore as of September 30, 2019. On a standalone basis Thomas Cook India is debt free. The Group generates an average annual free cash flow of around Rs 200 crore.
The shares of Thomas Cook (India) Ltd were trading at Rs 161.10, up 0.66 per cent on BSE in the morning trade.