Thomas Cook Sails on Despite Parent Company Insolvency

June 9, 2009
Thomas Cook Despite the fact that its majority shareholder, Arcandor, has filed for insolvency proceedings, U.K. travel giant Thomas Cook has said today that "it's business as usual" for its customers and suppliers.

Its cruise division, one of the biggest in the U.K., sells cruises from multiple cruise lines but doesn't operate its own ships and will also remain unaffected.

In a statement, Thomas Cook says, "there is no cause for concern following Arcandor AG's, Thomas Cook Group plc's majority shareholder with a 52.8 per cent stake, approach to the German Government and European Union with a request for state assistance with its current financial position.

"Arcandor has always been a very supportive shareholder that values its stake in Thomas Cook, but our businesses are entirely independent, both operationally and financially. We are a standalone company, listed in our own right on the London Stock Exchange and, as such, are completely ring-fenced."

It's important to note that filing to open insolvency proceedings is not the same as filing for bankruptcy. According to an official statement from Arcandor, "The aim of these proceedings is to continue the restructuring of the company and its subsidiaries that is already underway with an insolvency plan and to ensure their existence."

--by Melissa Baldwin Paloti, Managing Editor, with reporting by Kelly Ranson, U.K. Editor