Thomas Cook asks UK government for rescue fund

An Airbus A321 of Thomas Cook Airlines UK. Photo: © Andy Mitchell

British travel company Thomas Cook Group plc has asked the government of the United Kingdom for a £200 million (US $249 million) rescue fund.

The struggling company says it managed to secure a capital injection of £900 million (US $1.122 billion), but requires more funds immediately in order to avoid a possible insolvency and keep its operations running.

On Friday, Thomas Cook stated it is in active discussions with several stakeholders and lending banks. These include the Chinese Fosun Tourism Group, which has already offered to cover half of the initially required £900 million by providing a total of £450 million (US $561 million) for a 75% stake in the British company, pending shareholder’s approval.

Thomas Cook’s history goes back to 1841, making it the oldest travel company in the world. Today’s Group was founded in 2007, when the German Thomas Cook AG merged with British MyTravel Group plc.

A number of airlines are part of the Thomas Cook Group, these include the UK-based Thomas Cook Airlines, Germany-based Condor, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia and Thomas Cook Airlines Balearics. Its Belgian subsidiary Thomas Cook Airlines Belgium was discontinued in October 2017. With all companies combined, more than 110 aircraft are part of the Thomas Cook Group, consisting of the types Airbus A320 family, A330, Boeing 757-300 and 767-300.