Cruise.co.uk managing director Seamus Conlon has confirmed the business is seeking new investment from a private equity firm.
Speaking exclusively to Travel Weekly following reports in the national press, Conlon said he expected a deal to be struck later this year.
He declined to comment on speculation around the deal’s value, but reports in the Telegraph have alluded to it being worth £50 million.
The cruise specialist’s business has grown by 67% since it received investment and backing from Risk Capital Partners. Conlon said the new investment would help fuel international growth.
Conlon said: “Luke Johnson and Risk Capital Partners have invested in the company for the last three years and during that time we’ve grown that business by 67%.
“This year the company was ranked at number 54 in the Sunday Times Fast Track list – and was the only travel company included in the list this year.
“In addition, during that period, the company made two acquisitions, one in Ireland and one in Australia, and it’s our intention during 2016 to look for a larger Private Equity fund with which to further accelerate our international strategy and acquisitions. I see this process completing in the second half of this year.”
Conlon stressed the strategy for the UK was also continued growth.
“The current focus for the UK business is expansion and we’re currently looking to hire another 20 cruise specialist homeworking agents,” he added.
“We recently increased our salary to a guaranteed a minimum of £20,000 earnings a year. That’s a full-time proper employee where we also offer pensions and holiday, where we also provide our agents with all the leads.”
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