Private equity firm ‘shelves Park Holidays sell-off’

A private equity firm has reportedly scrapped its plans to sell one of the industry’s biggest operators, Park Holidays.

Travel Weekly reported that Caledonia Investments has shelved the sell-off due to a predicted post-Brexit domestic holiday boom.

Caledonia Investments reportedly prepared the company for sale in April, gauging interest from potential suitors with a price tag in the region of £250 million.

However, in light of the UK’s vote to leave the EU, it is anticipated that the domestic holiday market could well be in for a boost as people choose to holiday at home in 2017 thanks to a weakening pound. Add to this fears over security and political instability abroad and it perhaps isn’t so hard to see why Caledonian has shelved its plans to sell the business.

The Tourism Alliance projects that an extra £725 million has been spent so far this year in the British holiday industry.

‘Evidence of a post-Brexit tourism boost’

Park Holidays was bought by Caledonia three years ago for £172 million from Graphite Capital. It now has 25 sites in the south of England. According to Caledonia’s annual report, it generated £12.1 million in revenue in the 12 months to March 31.

A spokesman for Caledonia Investments declined to comment, Travel Weekly said. The number of caravan holidays in England rose from 92.6 million in 2014 to 102.7 million last year, according to the Great Britain Tourism Survey.

“Anecdotally there’s evidence of a post-Brexit tourism boost,” said VisitBritain director, Patricia Yates, citing recent surges in traffic to the websites of domestic tourist boards. She said this trend would continue a record-breaking start to 2016, with staycations up 8% year-on-year and spending up 22%.

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