Thomas Cook resurrected as online travel firm

In this file photo taken on September 26, 2019 A closed-down branch of the global travel group Thomas Cook is pictured three days after the company filed for bankruptcy, in Peterborough, central England on September 26, 2019. - The Chinese-owned Thomas Cook brand relaunched on September 16, 2020 as an online travel agency following the British group's collapse last year.

LONDON: Thomas Cook was relaunched yesterday as an online travel firm that will initially sell holidays to destinations on the UK government’s safe travel corridor list.

The company, bought by China’s Fosun Group for £11mil (US$14mil) after collapsing last year, has a new website through which customers can design their trips with add-ons including car hire and travel insurance, it said in a statement.

Thomas Cook’s collapse led to 9,000 job losses in the United Kingdom and left 150,000 tourists stranded overseas. The revamped company is using a trust model to protect payments and will only receive customers’ money once they return from holiday, UK chief executive officer Alan French said. Holidaymakers won’t be charged fees to rearrange their trips if government rules change, he said.

Fosun, owned by Chinese billionaire Guo Guangchang, acquired the Thomas Cook brand and online assets in November. The Shanghai-based group’s other assets include Club Med SAS and include English Premier League soccer club Wolverhampton Wanderers. Fosun operates various businesses under listed units Fosun Tourism Group, Fosun International Ltd and Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group Co. — Bloomberg
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