Jet2.com and Jet2holidays have ruled out any bid for either Thomas Cook’s retail or airline businesses stating they have “no interest” in their rival.

The statement follows Miles Morgan’s comments in Travel Weekly (27th June), in which he alluded to speculation around who might buy Thomas Cooks airline and retail operations.

He said: “There’s talk of Jet2holidays expressing interest” in their slots at airports and suggested a move to buy Thomas Cook’s shops would negate the need for working with independent agents.

Steve Heapy, chief executive of Jet2.com and Jet2holidays responded, categorically ruling out any interest. He said: “We would like to confirm that [we] have no interest in either Thomas Cook’s airline or Thomas Cook’s retail business.

“Through our successful package holiday business, Jet2holidays, we have developed fantastic relationships with independent travel agents, who are an integral part of our long-term distribution strategy.”

Heapy said Jet2 has “no plans or need” to purchase Thomas Cook shops or open its own on the high street, and it will continue to work with independent agents via its 20-strong trade sales team.

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“Our whole approach to working with these agents is based on a partnership model, so that we can support them to increase sales and grow their businesses. We are absolutely committed to this partnership approach which is why we have no plans or need to purchase any existing Thomas Cook shops or open our own retail shops in the high street.”

He added: “Let me make this clear, our focus is on continuing to foster close working relationships with independent travel agents through our ‘Partnership2Success’ strategy.

“This includes supporting agents through a range of initiatives such as joint marketing activity, taking agents out into their communities, sponsoring industry events, delivering our Earn Your Wings training programme, running VIP FAM trips, and hosting our annual VIP Travel Agent Conference.”

Jet2 will operate its largest ever programme this summer with 100 aircraft flying to destinations across Europe from nine UK bases.

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