Italian specialist Sardatur Holidays has been acquired by the Milan-based UVET Group.

It will fall under UVET’s umbrella of travel brands, including destination management companies (DMCs), tour operators Settemari and Amo il Mondo, hotel management companies and Blue Panorama Airlines.

Richmond-based operator Sardatur has specialised in Italian and Sardinian luxury holidays since it was founded in 1987.

It hopes to recognise its long-term grown strategy following the acquisition by the UVET Group, which has an annual turnover of €2.9 billion and wants to use the Sardatur brand to enter the UK market.

Luca Patanè, president and chief executive of UVET, said: “We are excited about the acquisition of Sardatur Holidays as we share the same values and vision creating the opportunity for both of us to combine efforts and synergies.

“This enables our company to enter the British market, which will now have access to additional travel products.  We share Sardatur Holidays’ passion for attention to detail, service of the highest quality and a client-centric focus.  This is a stimulating way to start the new year and we look forward to a bright future.”

Felice Soru, owner of Sardatur Holidays, added: “I am pleased to have sold Sardatur Holidays to UVET Group, and am confident that, as part of UVET Group, Sardatur Holidays, its employees, and customers will continue to flourish and grow. After over 45 years in the business, I am to retire and have handed over Sardatur to one of most innovative Italian travel businesses, and a leader in tourism.  My mission is accomplished!”

Sardatur Holidays sends its customers to four and five star hotels in Italy and is the top UK seller of Forte Village Resort in Sardinia.

Managing director Gianni Bonuglia said: “This marks a new, exciting beginning for me and the whole team at Sardatur Holidays. With the support of the UVET Group we can truly aspire to grow in our role as the UK’s number one Italian Holiday Specialist. Whilst remaining committed to deliver the highest level of service, our loyal customers can soon also look forward to new Sardatur Holidays products”