Thomas Cook Group has sold its 77% interest in Thomas Cook India to Fairbridge Capital, a subsidiary of Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited.

The Group will receive £94 million for the sale which will used to reduce its debts. In 2008 it was reported that Cook purchased the India business from Dubai Financial Group for between €208 million and €249 million.

The deal allows Canadian investor Fairfax to use the Thomas Cook brand for 12.5 years in the markets where Thomas Cook India currently operates.

The disposal is part of the Group’s previously announced plans to reduce debt and strengthen its financial position. These plans also include the proposed sale and leaseback of  17 aircraft.

Cook agreed a new £1.4 billion financing plan with the banks earlier this month. The deal allows Cook to retain net proceeds from disposals to provide additional liquidity.

The sale of Thomas cook India is still subject to approval of Thomas Cook shareholders and will require Indian regulatory approval, but is expected to complete within the current financial year.

Sam Weihagen, group chief executive said: “I am pleased to be able to announce this disposal, which is a further step in improving the Group’s financial position and demonstrates our on-going commitment to reducing debt and strengthening the balance sheet.

“I would like to thank the TCIL management team for the professionalism they have shown throughout this process. We wish them well under their new ownership.”