The acquisition by Hotelplan UK of escorted adventure tours specialist Explore Worldwide from their parent company Holidaybreak Group was announced today, for an undisclosed sum.
Explore has operated small group adventure holidays since 1981, with currently over 500 tours available across 120 countries on all seven continents. A highly experienced team in their Farnborough head office, award winning Tour Leaders, and a passionate commitment to responsible travel are the hallmarks of the company, which has been part of the Cox & Kings’ owned Holidaybreak Group since 2000.
At Hotelplan UK, the two companies join the Group’s existing portfolio of activity and experience holiday companies, which includes Inghams (whose range comprises Ski, Lakes & Mountains, Lapland and specialist Italy holidays), family skiing market leader Esprit Holidays, chalet specialist Ski Total, Santa’s Lapland short breaks, and self-guided walking and cycling experts, Inntravel. Holidaybreak’s decision to sell the businesses is a reflection of the increased focus on its rapidly expanding high growth education, hotel/hostel and mainstream leisure assets.
Hotelplan UK’s CEO, Andy Perrin, commented: “We are thrilled to welcome such a highly respected companies to our existing family of specialist travel brands. Hotelplan UK has a strong tradition of excellence and high standards of quality and service, so as successful, growing businesses with tremendous customer loyalty and highly experienced teams with incredibly deep product expertise, Explore fits perfectly with the overall philosophy, direction and ambition of the Hotelplan Group.”
Explore MD, Ashley Toft, noted: “It is an exciting time for all of us at Explore, with both our own company and the wider adventure travel sector growing fast. We are looking forward to joining forces with the enthusiastic team of like-minded travel people at Hotelplan.”
Commenting for Holidaybreak Group, Peter Kerkar CEO observed, “Our decision to sell Explore is undertaken following strong interest in its acquisition by trade buyers. We recognize that the continuation of its recent strong performance will be best facilitated by a dedicated tour operating group such as Hotelplan UK. We wish the management team and employees every success for the future.”
No personnel or location changes are planned, and Explore Worldwide will continue to operate from their current offices in Farnborough in Hampshire, under the continued leadership of Ashley Toft at Explore.