AIRTOURS-owned Travelworld is planning several acquisitions over the coming months to beef up its 108-shop chain after narrowly missing out on Birmingham miniple James Travel.
But managing director Terry Fisher has warned retailers not to use Travelworld’s growth as a bargaining tool when negotiating with other potential buyers.
Travelworld had agreed a deal of £750,000 for four-shop James Travel but three days before the purchase was due to go through, the miniple got a better offer, thought to be £1m, from Travel House, part of the Thomson Travel group.
“We’ve got acquisitions in the pipeline over the next few weeks and we are in the market for retailers of a decent size which can produce results for our UK Leisure Group,” said Fisher.
“But we’re not prepared to get into an auction with Thomson or anyone else. Yes, Travelworld was interested in James Travel, but then it got a call from Thomson.
“Two years ago the company would have been valued at £250,000. We know the market has shifted, but not that much. The market has got out of hand.
“If you want to sell your business quickly and get a fair price, then give us a ring. But if you want to use us to get a better price off someone else, then don’t bother.”
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