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Why Thomas Cook (India) is not affected by Thomas Cook's collapse

Forum Gandhi | Updated on September 23, 2019 Published on September 23, 2019

Thomas Cook India Ltd will not be affected by the collapse of Thomas Cook UK.   -  Bloomberg

While the 178-year-old British tour operator Thomas Cook collapsed on Sunday night, Thomas Cook (India) Group has not been impacted.

Read more: Thomas Cook collapse: Bailout fails, tourists stranded

Thomas Cook (India) Group is an entirely different entity since August 2012 when it was acquired by Fairfax Financial Holdings (Fairfax), a Canada based multinational investment company.

Post the transfer of its entire stake in Thomas Cook (India) Limited to Fairfax, Thomas Cook UK ceased to be the promoter of Thomas Cook (India) Limited and since then, Thomas Cook UK has had no stake in Thomas Cook (India) Limited.

"The last seven years have been fruitful as we continue to grow and build our legacy as an independent entity after Fairfax Financial Holdings acquired a 77 per cent stake in Thomas Cook India Ltd. (TCIL) in 2012," Thomas Cook India said in a statement.

At 10.45 am, the stocks of Thomas Cook India Ltd were trading 4.15 per cent lower at Rs 150.

TCIL financial position

The Thomas Cook India Group’s cash and bank deposits balances stand at Rs 1,389 crore as of June 30, 2019. "On a standalone basis, Thomas Cook India is debt free upon pre-payment of Rs 67 crore debenture obligations ahead of schedule. This has been made possible using stable and strong cash flows that the Thomas Cook India Group is generating year over year. The Group generates an average annual free cash flow of around Rs. 250 crore," TCIL said.

Meanwhile, the British entity said that "An application was made to the High Court for a compulsory liquidation of the Company before the opening of business today and an order has been granted to appoint the Official Receiver as the liquidator of the Company."

For the Indian entity, it is business as usual. Thomas Cook India observed a  21 per cent growth in demand for the Durga Puja festive break, from travellers in West Bengal and surrounding source markets. Domestic tourism is witnessing a strong resurgence, with an over 20 per cent  growth in demand across Andamans, Kerala, and Himachal Pradesh, amongst others.

Pavethra Ponniah, vice president and Sector Head - Corporate Sector Ratings, ICRA. "The demise of Thomas Cook Group PLC will cause disruptions in the value chain. Since it was globally a fairly big player, the ecosystem will get affected for at least a short term."

British travel group Thomas Cook declared bankruptcy after failing to reach a last-ditch rescue deal, triggering the UK’s biggest repatriation since World War II to bring back stranded passengers.

"Despite considerable efforts, those discussions have not resulted in an agreement between the company's stakeholders and proposed new money providers," Thomas Cook said in a statement. "The company's board has therefore concluded that it had no choice but to take steps to enter into compulsory liquidation with immediate effect."  According to AFP, the UK government has hired planes to fly home an estimated 150,000 holidaymakers to the UK.

Ponniah added that the British government has intervened and arranged for charter planes for tourists, however, "this will hit the government monetarily, and inbound tourism is likely to get impacted."

The announcement by the British company saw many taking to Twitter expressing their views on the development

 

An industry expert said, "Thomas Cook Group was a big player in the leisure segment. With the collapse of the oldest travel company, it will impact the travel in the short term but in the hindsight, it gives room for other players to expand their horizons."

Thomas Cook also had an airline, "The company's demise will have a short term hike to the airfares on the routes that their airline was flying on. However, just like in the case of the demise of Jet Airways, players like Vistara, Spicejet and Indigo got a boost, gradually, it will normalise."

Published on September 23, 2019
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