Technology

Luxury Escapes CEO breaks silence on potential Qantas, Booking.com or Webjet takeover

Huntley Mitchell

Huntley Mitchell

The boss of Luxury Escapes has responded to reports that Qantas, Booking.com and Webjet are looking to potentially purchase all or some of the online travel business.

The speculation wheel began spinning on Tuesday when The Australian Financial Review published an article in its Street Talk section saying that Qantas was considering a bid for Luxury Escapes “as part of a wider push to diversify the group’s earnings”.

“It is understood Qantas has tapped investment bank Citi for help with due diligence and financing considerations, and is working towards putting an offer to Luxury Escapes’ owners,” the article said.

According to the AFR, Luxury Escapes’ turnover is expected to be around $500 million in FY20, and its annual earnings have been growing at 50 per cent. The Nine-owned publication also noted that the company has a partnership with Qantas’ rewards program.

The AFR believes a deal between Luxury Escapes and Qantas could be finalised “before beach season hits top gear”.

Speculation began to mount yesterday when The Australian published its own take on potential suitors for Luxury Escapes, which it said was up for sale through Macquarie Capital.

According to The Australian, Booking.com is also potentially looking to acquire Luxury Escapes, and Webjet named in the article as a possible buyer too.

Flight Centre is understood to have pulled out of the race due to the price tag, and a Virgin Australia spokesperson confirmed to Travel Weekly it was not looking to do a deal with Luxury Escapes.

Webjet declined to comment on the speculation when approached by Travel Weekly, while Booking.com and Flight Centre and did not respond by the time of publishing.

According to the Luxury Escapes website, the business has more than two million subscribers globally, with customers across Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, India, Hong Kong, the US, and the UK.

Luxury Escapes is owned by Lux Group, a privately-owned business based in Melbourne which was founded in 2009 by Jeremy Same and Adam Schwab.

Lux Group has more than 150 team members globally, with major offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Bangalore, Singapore, and San Francisco.

Speaking to Travel Weekly, Cameron Holland denied the company is considering any active deals.

“As a rapidly growing business, we recognise that we are subject to interest and speculation in the market from time to time,” he said.

“There are no current active opportunities being considered by Lux Group. However, we regularly assess the market and consider strategic options which will enable Luxury Escapes to continue to grow its market leadership position and deliver value realisation opportunities to shareholders.

“With strong revenue growth of 30 per cent year on year and recent international expansion, Luxury Escapes has become a global leader in the luxury travel marketplace, particularly when it comes to the new generation of traveller.”


SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Wholesalers

Give your clients a taste of wabi-sabi with InsideJapan’s new cultural journey

Don’t worry, the new trip doesn’t involve eating loads of that little green paste that comes with your sushi (that’s WASABI, not wabi-sabi). However, if that’s your thing, we won’t stop you.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Hotel cops criticism for charging almost $400 to access its bar

The hotel owner said he introduced the fee because he was tired of finding strangers in his garden, which is the most Welsh thing we’ve ever read.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

This tourism ad is so weird and trippy, it’ll have you declaring “WTF did I just watch?”

Did you perhaps take an ecstasy tablet in your misspent youth? Travel Weekly warns this ad could bring it back on 15 years later.

Share

CommentComments

Technology

Sabre’s Nicole Regel promoted to regional role

Travel Weekly understands Nicole Regel is eyeing the IKEA JÄRVFJÄLLET leatherette swivel chair in charcoal after her recent promotion.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

P&O extends Aussie cruise pause, as Pacific Adventure emerges from dry dock

Don’t let the headline fool you; this article also contains some uplifting cruise news to give sail-savvy agents a little Friday boost.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Travel industry veteran takes “black sheep” approach to help brands navigate COVID landscape

Trish Shepherd, the mastermind behind this new company, has assured us it’s got nothing to do with agricultural practices, as we first imagined.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

“A wonderful spectacle”: Spain’s Tourism Minister suggests using catastrophic volcanic eruption to attract visitors

The country’s Tourism Minister is in hot water after she appeared to propose using a volcanic eruption that has destroyed hundreds of homes to lure tourists to the Canary Islands.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

WATCH: Flight attendant promises to annoy passengers who don’t wear a mask

As you can imagine, the comment section on this TikTok user’s video was… divided, to say the least.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Tourism Minister says international borders will reopen by Christmas “at the latest”

by Ali Coulton

Dan Tehan has urged states to stick to the national plan and encouraged Aussies to “roll up their sleeves”.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

IHG’s Leanne Harwood elected first-ever female president of the Accommodation Association

Hospo industry veteran Leanne Harwood is back in the headlines, and this time it’s about her very deserving new role.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Passenger claims flight attendant told her to glue a mask to her distressed toddler’s face

A mother has taken to social media to call out a flight attendant who she claims gave her a rather distressing ultimatum.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Strong take-up of AFTA membership continues

If the current demand for AFTA membership is anything to go by, there’s a lot of confidence that agents can clear the remaining pandemic hurdles.

Share

CommentComments