Thu, 18 Nov 2021 | BUSINESS SALE
A Plymouth-based travel company specialising in overseas diving trips has been saved from administration following a pre-pack acquisition of the non-licensable part of the business by Scuba Tours Worldwide Ltd.
Blue 02 Ltd, which traded as Blue O Two, had registered strong growth pre-pandemic but said that the UK’s stringent, and constantly changing, COVID travel restrictions made it “almost impossible” to deliver diving experiences, with some customers having holidays rescheduled multiple times.
Nathan Tyler, director of Blue O Two, said: “Before COVID, our business was a high growth success story. Despite our best efforts and determination, the financial impact of the pandemic became too great and we were forced to restructure our business.”
Over the course of the pandemic, refunds totalling more than £3 million were made to customers and without investment the business faced closure. However, the brand has now been saved, protecting jobs and providing continuity for about 1,700 customers.
Andrew Sheridan and Simon Stibbons, partners at business advisory firm FRP, were appointed as joint administrators of Blue O2 Ltd on November 15 and immediately completed the sale of the non-licensable part of the business to Scuba Tours Worldwide Ltd.
Joint administrator Andrew Sheridan commented: "This has been an incredibly tough time for the travel industry with even well-established businesses like Blue O Two facing significant challenges. We're therefore delighted to have secured a sale of the non-licensable part of the business, which saved the jobs of all of the employees and protects holidays for 1,700 customers."
Directors Jason Strickland and Nathan Tyler said they were delighted that the Blue O Two brand “lives on under Scuba Tours Worldwide Ltd – which now trades as Blue O Two."
Read more about how COVID-19's impact is creating acquisition opportunities in the travel sector.
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