The Worldchoice board has recommended to shareholders that they accept a bid by the Travel Trust Association in a merger deal worth £6 million in total.
The consortium’s board had been considering a decision on whether to join Stella Travel Services, as part of the Global Travel Group, or to accept the bid made by TTA (2007).
It is hoped the TTA deal will be completed by the end of March following due diligence, court approval and an extraordinary general meeting in which a minimum of 75% of shareholders need to vote in favour.
Under the proposed deal, shareholders will receive an offer of £2.75 per share.
TTA (2007) will also invest a sum of money into a five-year trust fund for members, likely to be worth £1.3 million. The members retention fund will make payouts on a points scheme to Worldchoice members after five years depending on their performance, rather than turnover.
The highest payouts are likely to reach £20,000, but all members should receive at least £2,000.
Worldchoice chairman and managing director Colin Heal said the deal would also mean further investment in the Worldchoice brand and allow members the opportunity to apply for further funding to expand their businesses.
The future of Worldchoice’s Peterborough head office would be secure under the deal. Heal said he did not anticipate any redundancies but admitted some staff may be deployed in different positions.
“We will look for synergies by jobs being done in a slightly different way,” he said.
He maintained the recommendation was unconnected to uncertainties about Stella’s future.