Thomas Cook collapses after rescue talks fail
Tour operator Thomas Cook has collapsed after last minute negotiations to save the 178-year old business failed.
The company’s demise has put over 20,000 jobs at risk, of which 9,000 are in the UK. In addition, Thomas Cook operates 600 high street stores which are now expected to close.
The news means that some 150,000 Thomas Cook customers have been stranded abroad although the Civil Aviation Authority is working with the UK government to ensure they can fly home.
An application was made to the High Court for a compulsory liquidation of the company early today and an order was granted to appoint the Official Receiver as the liquidator of the company.
Peter Fankhauser, chief executive of Thomas Cook, said the business had worked exhaustively over the last few days to try and find a way to secure its future. While a refinancing deal had been largely agreed, it is understood to have fallen apart at the last minute when lenders asked the company to find an extra £200 million in financing to get it through the winter months.
Fankhauser added: “It is a matter of profound regret to me and the rest of the board that we were not successful. I would like to apologise to our millions of customers, and thousands of employees, suppliers and partners who have supported us for many years. Despite huge uncertainty over recent weeks, our teams continued to put customers first, showing why Thomas Cook is one of the best-loved brands in travel.”
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