Lincolnshire

Co-op Travel store set to leave Boston High Street

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Co-op Travel stores will change to Thomas Cook as part of a £55 million deal, including one in Boston.

The Co-op Travel store in Boston will rebrand to Thomas Cook following the mutual decision to split a five year partnership the two companies had formed.

This does not impact on the travel branches owned by Lincolnshire Co-op.

The Co-operative Group will now invest the £55 million from the sale, along with an additional £30 million in dividends into its core businesses.

It is expected that Thomas Cook will take on all 764 Co-op Travel stores across the country by November 2017.

Rod Bulmer, Chief Executive of consumer services at the Co-op, said: “Going forward, having a minority stake in a travel business does not fit with the strategy of the Co-op.

“The financial arrangements for exit that were put in place as part of the original JV agreement represent the best value for our members.

“The payments we receive from the exit will be used to invest in our core business areas.”

Peter Fankhauser, Chief Executive of Thomas Cook Group, said: “Our relationship with the Co-op has given us a strong presence on the high street and fantastic colleagues across the UK, both of which are so important in attracting and inspiring our customers.

“This purchase gives us full control over our retail store network, enabling us to better integrate our stores with our online offering, while also helping us to focus on growing sales of added extras such as holiday-related financial services.

“Over the next two years, we will bring all of our UK stores under the Thomas Cook banner so we can make full use of the best brand in travel.”