Mergers and acquisitions in tourism, the boom after Covid

By Andrea Barbieri Carones

A report edited by a French investment bank and an Indian consultancy firm aims to monitor the performance of the M&A (merger and acquisition) sector among travel companies.

Mergers and acquisitions in the tourism world are on the rise . Management or ownership changes increased especially during or after the months of the Covid emergency, which changed the economic landscape.

French travel investment bank, Cambon Partners , and India-based tourism research firm, Videc, have released the first tracker of the sector.

This covers mergers and acquisitions in the travel industry globally, providing performance insights and deal assessments.

Highlights from the mergers and acquisitions study-

These are the salient points of the study.

  • During the period between 2014 and the end of September 2023, a total of 1,758tourism businesses were sold worldwide .
  • The total value of the 382 deals for which valuations are available reaches $ 212 billion .
  • Europe (42%) and North America (38%) are the areas in which most M&A(mergers & acquisitions) activities take place during this decade.
  • Post-pandemic M&A activity is picking up: since 2022, 423 companies have changed hands compared to 389 in 2018-2019.

Commenting on the data, Morgann Lesné , Travel Lead & Partner of Cambon Partners , spoke about the birth of the “M&A Database”.

«We are pleased to announce the launch of the Travel M&A Database in collaboration with Videc, whose experience in emerging markets is unparalleled. Insights suggest that Europe is the most active region for travel mergers and acquisitions, with 212 deals (2022–2023).”

The difference with the pre-Covid period – and with the two-year period 2018-2019 in particular – is notable given that there were “only” 154 operations.

«Among the categories, hospitality is the most trending with 149 transactions compared to 125 in the pre-pandemic period. Technology took center stage with software and SAAS (software as a service) vendor deals growing from 65 to 107 deals. Over time, the database will offer comprehensive coverage of mergers and acquisitions in tourism. It will also serve as a definitive guide for closing deals in the global travel market.”

Further details are being published-

In addition to this, Virendra Jain , CEO and co-founder of Videc, touched on the topic of business travel .

While there was exponential growth in turnover, after the pandemic, businesses and tourists focused a lot on profitability and sustainability. The B2B sector was the protagonist of this trend with 151 operations which rose to 219 after the pandemic. Likewise, there has been a sharp increase in acquisitions or mergers in the corporate travel space. To the point that after the Covid emergency the sector witnessed a doubling of transactions. We are pleased to partner with the industry’s leading travel M&A investment bank to provide this valuable resource to our industry.”

The two companies that followed the study will periodically publish further details . In a dedicated portal it will be possible to see all the data that has emerged.

Cambon Partners is a Paris- based investment banking firm specializing in mergers, acquisitions and corporate financing. It has a team of travel bankers and a number of corporate finance businesses in the European travel and hospitality market.

The partnership with Videc is part of Cambon Partners’ journey to become the leading travel technology and distribution investment bank globally. The objective, in particular, is to grow in the Far East and the Middle East.

For its part, Videc is a Mumbai -based company founded in 2016. It deals with research and consultancy on mergers and acquisitions in the global travel, tourism and hospitality industry.

In particular, it helps companies that wish to carry out acquisitions or mergers, taking care of all aspects.

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