The Swedish investment firm bidding for Thomas Cook’s Nordic operations is taking over a leading tour operating group in Holland and Belgium.

Triton is to acquire the tour operating activities of Corendon Holiday Group via its Sunweb Group for an undisclosed sum.

Founded in 2000, Corendon handles more than 750,000 holidaymakers a year with a turnover of €515 million.

In May, Cook confirmed it had received an “unsolicited” approach for its northern Europe business from Triton.

Cook’s arm in northern Europe comprises a tour operation and airline in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark.

The bid came after Cook future was called into when it reported headline winter half-year losses of £1.45 billion.

Triton now plans to merge Sunweb and Corendon into a joint company “taking advantage of enhanced scale, financial strength, innovation culture, a larger client base and airline capacity”.

The agreement consists of the Corendon tour operating activities in Holland and Belgium, back-office operations in Turkey and Corendon Dutch Airlines.

It also includes Corendon’s brands Karin’s Choice, Maris Life, Stip, and GOfun.

The Turkish and European airline and the hotels of Corendon Hotels & Resorts are not part of the transaction.

Sunweb and Corendon will keep their current brands and organisational structures.

Sunweb Group was acquired by Triton in February, with operations in  The Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, UK, Germany and France. It carried one million holidaymakers last year.

Per Ageback, investment advisory professional, sector leader for consumer and advisor to the Triton Funds, said: “The value chain in travel is changing, and Corendon has proven that its position and business model is resilient and winning in this complex environment.”

 

Sunweb Group chief executive Gert de Caluwe added: “The merger of Sunweb and Corendon is a natural and logical step.

“For the last years, both Sunweb and Corendon have managed to stay ahead as competitors in an ever-changing travel industry.

“A key driver for the continued growth and development has not only been the strong product offering but also the digitalisation of both brands.”