CVC Capital Partners is closing in on a takeover of one of Britain’s biggest holiday park operators, a bet on booming demand for staycations amid conflicting government guidance over foreign holidays.
Sky News has learnt that CVC, the former owner of Formula One motor racing, could announce a £250m takeover of Away Resorts as soon as this week.
Sources cautioned that a deal had yet to be finalised, and warned that the negotiations could still fall apart.
If successfully concluded, they added, CVC is expected to examine bids for rival operators in the coming months, with Park Holidays and Verdant Leisure also having been put up for sale.
Away Resorts owns well-known holiday parks such as Whitecliff Bay on the Isle of Wight and Sandy Balls in the New Forest.
Its parks typically host roughly 200,000 holidaymakers in a ‘normal’ year, with demand having surged for bookings this summer as lockdown measures are eased.
Confusion over Britons’ ability to take holidays overseas this summer deepened this week when the environment secretary, George Eustice, said people should “holiday at home”.
Portugal’s shift from the ‘amber’ to ‘green’ list sparked chaos as thousands of holidaymakers tried to curtail holidays and rush back from the Algarve.
The confusion, along with quarantining requirements, are expected to fuel demand from British holidaymakers for staycations for at least this summer and possibly many more months, according to travel industry analysts.
Away Resorts is owned by Freshstream, a private equity firm which took control of the business in 2019.
Bankers at Rothschild are overseeing the sale talks with CVC.
CVC and Freshstream both declined to comment.
Source: Sky News
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