Thomas Cook India Group has signed an agreement with AlixPartners, Thomas Cook UK Group’s appointed special managers, to acquire the rights to the Thomas Cook brand in India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius for a one-time payment of £1.5 million (approximately ₹139 million).
Thomas Cook India was previously contracted to pay an annual brand licence fee of ₹20 million to Thomas Cook UK Group until 2024 for usage of the brand.
Thomas Cook India has operated the Thomas Cook brand name uninterrupted in India since 1881.
In 2012 when the brand was acquired by Fairfax Financial Holdings of Canada, it had entered into a ‘Brand Licence Agreement’ with Thomas Cook UK Group for exclusive use of the brand name until 2024 across India, Sri Lanka and Mauritius.
The brand license agreement also gave Thomas Cook India the right of first refusal to acquire the brand in the event of Thomas Cook UK Group going into liquidation before 2024.
The Indian brand’s acquisition of the exclusive ownership of the Thomas Cook brand in these markets means brand usage rights in perpetuity and on a royalty-free basis.
This move also prevents possible new entrants into these markets, using the brand name as well.
In addition to Thomas Cook, the Thomas Cook India Group operates B2C and B2B travel brands including SOTC, TCI, SITA, Asian Trails, Allied T Pro (ATP), Australian Tours Management (ATM), Desert Adventures, Luxe Asia, Kuoni Hong Kong, TC Travel, Private Safaris East & South Africa, Sterling Holidays and Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging (DEI), with strategic investments in Ithaka by Travel Junkie Solutions.