Hays Travel Pledge To Buy Out Thomas Cook – BinaryOptions

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Thomas Cook stores are bought by Hays Travel saving thousands of jobs

  • 9 Oct 2020, 9:52
  • Updated : 9 Oct 2020, 17:29
  • Invalid Date,

HAYS Travel has agreed to buy all 555 Thomas Cook stores, saving up to 2,500 jobs that were lost when the travel group collapsed.

Boss Irene Hays described how emotional ex-employees broke down in tears and held one another after being offered new jobs at her company.

Hays, the country’s largest independent travel agent chain, says it has already recruited 595 former Thomas Cook workers.

Thomas Cook left 9,000 people in the UK without a job last month, forcing ex-staff to visit food banks and borrow money to make ends meet.

But thousands of these employees have now been offered a lifeline after it was confirmed a “significant number” will be offered new jobs.

The travel company added that it plans to reopen all the shops with immediate effect with some opening doors as soon as tomorrow.

Thomas Cook employee rights

SOME Thomas Cook employees have already been told that they are being made redundant, although that number is expected to increase.

A handful of staff are being kept on to assist the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) in getting Thomas Cook holidaymakers home and to help wind up the shops’ operations.

Employees who have been made redundant will not be paid their September paycheck because the company is in liquidation.

Former staff will have to apply for their wages owed from the Redundancy Payment Service (RPS).

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This is a scheme run by the Insolvency Service, an agency of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, that deals with companies that stop trading due to financial difficulties.

You can apply as long as you were working for the company with an employment contract and you live in England, Scotland and Wales.

But the amount you may receive is capped at £525 a week, meaning that you won’t be paid all of what you’re owed if your salary is more.

As well as unpaid wages, you can also apply for accrued holiday pay, redundancy payouts, and compensation for not being able to work your notice period, called statutory notice pay.

Each application is treated separately and also capped at £525 a week.

The agency aims to pay you your wages within 14 days of receiving your application, or sooner if possible.

Staff based in Northern Ireland can find out more about their rights here.

Employees of Thomas Cook’s airlines and tour operator companies are encouraged to speak to administrators AlixPartners, while retail and aircraft maintenance staff should speak to KPMG to make a claim via its dedicated website or email [email protected]

The government has a dedicated web page for more information for Thomas Cook passengers and staff.

Hays, which is headquartered in Sunderland and has been operating for 40 years, currently has 190 shops across the UK.

It uses other tour operators to sell holidays to customers including Jet2holidays and TUI.

Hays confirmed jobs will be available for former Thomas Cook retail staff.

Ex-employees are being told to call Hays on 0800 215 5995 or visit their website on haystravel.co.uk/careers.

Thomas Cook is now in the hands of the Official Receiver who are in charge of dealing with the insolvency process.

David Chapman, the official receiver of Thomas Cook, said: “This represents an important step in the liquidation process, as we seek to realise the company’s assets.

John and Irene Hays, managing director and group chair of Hays Travel, said: “Thomas Cook was a much-loved brand employing talented people.

We look forward to working with many of them.”

Thomas Cook ceased trading with immediate effect on September 23 after the travel firm was unable to pay £200million to its creditors.

The travel firm’s demise sparked the largest peacetime repatriation since World War Two after 150,000 passengers were stranded abroad.

Hays isn’t the only company offering work to ex-Thomas Cook employees.

Last month we reported how axed Thomas Cook staff have been lined up for new jobs at BA, easyJet, Flybe, Tui and Virgin.

Employees who have lost their jobs are advised to make a claim to the Insolvency Service’s Redundancy Payments Service for arrears of wages.

Reprieve for Thomas Cook’s UK stores as Hays Travel deal saves up to 2,500 jobs

LONDON (Reuters) – Hays Travel will buy all of Thomas Cook’s TCG.D British travel agent shops, potentially saving up to 2,500 jobs and providing a rare boost for high streets across the country.

Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel company whose shops have been a feature of British town centers for generations, collapsed last month, stranding tens of thousands of passengers as its UK business went into liquidation.

Hays Travel will buy all 555 stores as part of a deal brokered by insolvency advisers KPMG, and the privately-owned travel firm will look to re-employ former employees from Thomas Cook’s retail operations.

It also rejected the notion that high street travel agents are dying.

“We’re a successful business and because we’re independent and offer all tour operators, then we are optimistic that we will trade well . in all of the shops,” founder John Hays told reporters after the deal.

Thomas Cook collapsed after it became unable to service its debts and failed to convince banks to back a rescue plan in the face of changing customer habits and intense competition from low-cost airlines and internet companies.

It had created the largest chain of travel agents in Britain when it merged its retail operations with those of the Co-operative Group and the Midlands Co-operative Society in 2020.

Hays Travel, a family company which is jointly owned and managed by Managing Director John Hays and Chair Irene Hays, will now be taking that network on.

DIGITAL WORLD

The 40-year-old firm based in Sunderland in north-east England reached sales of more than 1 billion pounds ($1.2 billion) in 2020.

Its management said it was optimistic the shops would prosper thanks to the firm’s distinctive approach, where employees have free rein to give each branch a distinctive character, often built through social media.

“The death of the high street travel is a question we’ve been asked for many years, but we feel we do something different to other high street travel agents,” John Hays told reporters.

“We live in a digital world . The Web was their enemy (at Thomas Cook), whereas if you ask the Hays Travel member of staff, they would say the Web is their friend, because we interact positively with it.”

Hays Travel currently operates just 190 of its own branches across the United Kingdom, employing 1,900 people.

The company said it had no plans to close any shops, but would evaluate the performance of each store going forward.

Hays Travel did not disclose financial details of the deal, other than saying it had been funded without taking on any debt.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary ( RYA.I ) last week said the business models of both tour operators and travel agents were dead as no young people bought holidays from them.

Irene Hays said her company’s data showed differently.

“There has been a huge resurgence in package holidays in recent years,” she told reporters. “It’s evident, it’s in all of our metrics. So the answer is no, we do not agree with Michael O’Leary.”

Reporting by Alistair Smout in London, additional reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru, Editing by Alexander Smith and Mark Potter

Hays to buy Thomas Cook’s UK stores in reprieve for up to 2,500 staff

Hays Travel will buy all of Thomas Cook’s British travel agent shops, potentially saving up to 2,500 jobs and providing a rare boost for high streets across the UK.

Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel company whose shops have been a feature of UK town centres for generations, collapsed last month.

Tens of thousands of passengers were stranded as its UK business went into liquidation.

Hays Travel will buy all 555 stores as part of a deal brokered by insolvency advisers KPMG, and the privately-owned travel firm will look to re-employ former employees from Thomas Cook’s retail operations.

It also rejected the notion that high street travel agents are dying.

“We’re a successful business and because we’re independent and offer all tour operators, then we are optimistic that we will trade well in all of the shops,” founder John Hays told reporters after the deal.

Thomas Cook collapsed after it became unable to service its debts.

It also failed to convince banks to back a rescue plan in the face of changing customer habits and intense competition from low-cost airlines and internet companies.

It had created the largest chain of travel agents in Britain when it merged its retail operations with those of the Co-operative Group and the Midlands Co-operative Society in 2020.

Hays Travel, a family company which is jointly owned and managed by Managing Director John Hays and Chair Irene Hays, will now be taking that network on.

The 40-year-old firm based in Sunderland in reached sales of more than £1 billion in 2020.

Its management said it was optimistic the shops would prosper thanks to the firm’s distinctive approach, where employees have free rein to give each branch a distinctive character, often built through social media.

“The death of the high street travel is a question we’ve been asked for many years, but we feel we do something different to other high street travel agents,” John Hays told reporters.

“We live in a digital world. The Web was their enemy (at Thomas Cook), whereas if you ask the Hays Travel member of staff, they would say the Web is their friend, because we interact positively with it,” Mr Hays added.

Hays Travel currently operates just 190 of its own branches across the UK, employing 1,900 people.

The company said it had no plans to close any shops, but would evaluate the performance of each store going forward.

Hays Travel did not disclose financial details of the deal, other than saying it had been funded without taking on any debt.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary last week said the business models of both tour operators and travel agents were dead as no young people bought holidays from them.

Irene Hays said her company’s data showed differently.

“There has been a huge resurgence in package holidays in recent years,” she told reporters.

“It’s evident, it’s in all of our metrics. So the answer is no, we do not agree with Michael O’Leary,” she added.

Thomas Cook refund website targeted by fraudsters

Fraudsters are suspected of targeting a website created to refund Thomas Cook customers, the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has said.

The aviation regulator said it has taken “urgent action” over the suspicious online activity and will inform the police.

It has added further verification checks to its refund process and pledged to seek prosecutions where there is evidence of deception.

Some of the concern is understood to have risen from a series of low-level claims, which often indicates fraud.

Around 100,000 claims have been made since the website went live on Monday morning.

It was set up to enable people with Atol-protected bookings for Thomas Cook holidays due to begin after the firm collapsed on September 23 to obtain refunds.

This relates to more than 360,000 bookings covering trips set to be taken by 800,000 people.

Atol-protected customers who were already abroad when Thomas Cook failed can also claim for the cost of replacing the parts of their holiday which were financially protected, or out-of-pocket expenses for delayed flights.

The CAA is aiming to pay refunds within 60 days of receiving a valid form and wants to crack down on fraudulent activity to avoid any delay.

Deirdre Hutton, who chairs the organisation, said: “This morning we have taken urgent action in response to what we believe is attempted fraudulent activity in relation to refunds for Thomas Cook customers”.

“If you have made a claim directly with us, then your claim is being processed and you do not need to take any action,” she said.

“Please help us to combat the risk of fraud by not submitting your details to any other website. Our focus is on getting money back to the right people as soon as possible and combating fraud in every way possible,” she added.

The CAA was forced to apologise on Monday after its system struggled to cope with “unprecedented demand” in the hours after it launched.

Many people received an error message after entering their details, meaning their claims were not submitted.

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Hays to buy Thomas Cook British stores in reprieve for up to 2,500 staff

One of the many closed Thomas Cook stores.

Hays Travel will buy all Thomas Cook’s British travel agent shops, potentially saving up to 2,500 jobs, Britain’s insolvency agency said earlier today, in a rare reprieve for high streets across the country.

Thomas Cook, the world’s oldest travel company whose shops have been a feature of British town centres for generations, collapsed last month, and its UK business went into liquidation.

Hays Travel will acquire all 555 stores and look to re-employ former employees from Thomas Cook’s retail operations, Britain’s Insolvency Service said in a statement.
“This agreement . provides re-employment opportunities for a significant number of former Thomas Cook employees, and secures the future of retail sites up and down the UK high street,” Jim Tucker, Partner at KPMG, said.

Hays Travel is a private company, jointly owned and managed by Managing Director John Hays and Chair Irene Hays. The 40-year-old firm based in Sunderland in north-east England reached sales of more than 1 billion pounds ($1.22 billion) in 2020.

“It is a game-changer for us, almost trebling the number of shops we have and doubling our workforce – and for the industry, which will get to keep some of its most talented people,” John Hays said in a statement on the company’s website.

Thomas Cook’s collapse stranded hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers around the globe and sparked the largest peacetime repatriation effort in British history.

Hays Travel has already recruited 421 former Thomas Cook employees since its collapse, and have made other offers to the travel firm’s former workers, the Insolvency Service said.

Britain has appointed an Official Receiver to try and realise value from Thomas Cook’s assets. KPMG is overseeing the process at its retail division and aircraft maintenance companies, while insolvency practitioners from Alix Partners are managing the liquidation of its airline and tour operator.

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