Hays Travel has reached an agreement with receivers working on the liquidation of Thomas Cook to acquire the entire retail estate of the collapsed travel agent.
The deal will see Hays Travel acquire a total of 555 stores around the UK.
It is hoped the move will also provide re-employment opportunities for a significant number of former employees of Thomas Cook’s retail operations.
All Thomas Cook retail employees were made redundant following the appointment of the official receiver as liquidator on September 23rd.
Hays Travel is the country’s largest independent travel agent.
The company also runs the Hays Travel Independence Group, a consortium of independent travel agents, in addition to operating a subsidiary business, Just Go Travel, which trades under the Hays Travel brand predominantly across the north-west of England.
David Chapman, official receiver, said: “I am pleased to announce we have reached an agreement with Hays Travel to acquire Thomas Cook’s entire UK retail estate, comprising 555 stores across the country.
“This represents an important step in the liquidation process, as we seek to realise the company’s assets.
Following the appointment of the official receiver last month, Hays Travel have already recruited 421 former Thomas Cook personnel and have further offers outstanding to former employees.
John and Irene Hays, managing director and group chair of Hays Travel, said: “Thomas Cook was a much-loved brand employing talented people.
“We look forward to working with many of them.”
: Joe Giddens/PA Wire/PA s