MONTREAL – Transat A.T. Inc. has signed an agreement with H10 Hotels for the sale of its minority 35% interest in Ocean Hotels for an amount of US$150.5 million (Cdn$190 million). Transat remains fully committed to becoming a full-fledged hotel operator and is selling its minority interest in Ocean Hotels in order to accelerate the development of its own hotel chain in the South.
This interest sold had a book value of Cdn$109.1 million as at April 30, 2017. The agreement, signed today with H10, which already owns the other 65% of the co-venture created in 2007, is binding and subject to certain usual conditions. The sale price is subject to adjustments at the time of the closing of the transaction by November 2, 2017, and after if necessary.
“Owning a minority position in Ocean has been a valuable venture for Transat both economically and strategically, allowing us to develop an expertise and insight into the hotel business. Being a minority owner was no longer an interesting use of our capital as we embark on further investments in the sector,” said Jean-Marc Eustache, President and Chief Executive Officer, Transat. “We want to control our own destiny, and this transaction is the ideal springboard for building a hotel chain that reflects our style. Our hotel division will take shape in the near future, including with the hiring of a president to lead it. We are very excited at the idea of moving forward with this priority initiative for the company.”
The sale of its minority interest in Ocean Hotels, as well as the proceeds from the sale of its tour operating activities in France and Greece last October, will support Transat’s creation of its own hotel development project. In recent years, Transat has refocused its operations around three strategic areas: air transportation, hotel operation and travel distribution. Last week, the company announced the replacement of its nine Airbus A310s with 10 new Airbus A321neo LRs, starting in 2019. This is a major investment that will take its fleet to a higher level. The future investments in its hotel business will enable it to provide its customers with a travel experience that is perfectly tailored to their needs.