TUI shifts ownership of Nordotel subsidiary

TUI Group headquarters
TUI Group headquarters in Hanover, Germany. (TUI Group)

Insight Comment
It’s difficult to know whether TUI would have been as aggressive in its asset disposal programme had it not been for the pandemic, but the fact that it was announced in 2019 suggests it might have been. Nevertheless, generating cash from sales is pretty handy, when you haven’t been able to sell that many holidays over the past 18 months.

TUI Group is relinquishing full control of its Nordotel subsidiary as it moves further towards an asset light model.

Taking over the company is Grupotel a 50:50 joint venture between TUI and the Ramis family. Nordotel operates hotels in Spain, primarily for Scandinavian guests. 

A total of 11 hotels will be marketed and operated by Grupotel in future. All properties will remain part of TUI's portfolio and continue to contribute to the results of the group's hotel division.

What this means for TUI

It’s another deal that nudges TUI closer towards the asset light model of ownership, which has proven so popular with the big hotel chains. It also marks a big departure from even the recent past.

Only a couple of years ago TUI was talking about a move from a trading to a yielding business, where ownership of its assets gave it much more control. After all it had at that point 20 million customers which it could funnel anywhere it liked, helping to manage the risk of low occupancy.

Things changed even before the pandemic and since then TUI has disposed of a number of hotels and is also looking at selling its UK cruise brand Marella.

As well as helping shift strategy, it will also enable TUI to settle some of its Covid-19-related debts. Last week the company announced it was looking to raise another €1.1 billion.