Malvern Group to appoint administrators
Travel technology firm Malvern Group has been put up for sale and expects to appoint administrators on Friday.
The North West firm, parent company of Late Rooms, Superbreak Mini-Holidays and Malvern Travel Technology, has ceased trading after part-owner Cox & Kings defaulted on debt repayments.
The Indian travel specialist has appointed professional services firm KPMG to undertake a review of its strategic options.
A statement from Malvern Group read: “Following news of Cox and Kings India’s loan default a month ago, the situation has deteriorated rapidly resulting in the withdrawal of any further funding for Malvern Group.
“The management team recently appointed advisors from KPMG to undertake an accelerated sales process to ensure further investment, and have engaged with our principal bankers to secure interim funding.
“Unfortunately, given the short timeframe enabled by our cash position and despite interest from potential purchasers, we have been unable to secure bank support or a sale of the business.
“As a result, Late Rooms Ltd (t/a LateRooms.com), Superbreak Mini-Holidays Ltd (t/a Super Break) and Malvern Travel Technology Limited are unable to continue on a solvent basis and have ceased trading.
“The senior team at Malvern Group have worked tirelessly to look at all available options to protect our employees, customers, trade partners and suppliers, whilst simultaneously working with regulatory bodies… to ensure minimum disruption to our customers in the event that the business could not continue.
“The company continues to invite bids for the business and its assets. The appointment of an administrator is expected tomorrow (Friday).”
Malvern is 49 per cent owned by Cox & Kings, with the majority of the shares owned by undisclosed private investors.
Hugo Kimber, executive chairman of Malvern Group, said: “This is a devastating blow for all of our wonderful employees who have invested so much time and effort into building Malvern, its brands and trips technology platform.
“This is equally difficult for all our suppliers, partners and customers who will be impacted by this news. To be so close to delivering our goal of an integrated, dynamic and commercially successful business, that could provide significant value through its innovative products, is heart-breaking.”
Kimber recently outlined to BusinessCloud how he expected its new technology platform, which powers dynamic baskets with partners including National Express, to become the dominant portion of the business in the coming years.