Online travel agency On the Beach is to buy rival Sunshine.co.uk for £12 million.

The acquisition will add around 200,000 customers to On the Beach.

The Cheadle-headquartered firm currently has 1.2 million on its books.

Simon Cooper, chief executive and founder of On the Beach Group, said: "We are delighted to have acquired a brand as well-established with beach holidaymakers as Sunshine.co.uk.

"This earnings-enhancing transaction reflects the board's ambition to consolidate On the Beach's leading position in the online beach holiday space while supporting our drive to exclusivity and underpinning our ability to further leverage our scale."

Sunshine is based in Cramlington, Northumberland. The deal will be funded from existing cash resources and bank facilities in the form of an extension to the group's working capital revolving credit facility with Lloyds Bank.

Sunshine reported gross assets of £18.6m and EBITDA of £1.6m for the 13-month period to 30th September 2016.

Three quarters of the £12m will be paid on completion and the remaining 25 per cent is due in December.

We featured On The Beach in our feature on the rise of online travel agents and personalised holidays in our first edition last year.