SAILISBURY-BASED TOUR OPERATOR SPECIALIST JOURNEYS ACQUIRES BRIGHTWATER HOLIDAYS WITH FUNDING FROM SANTANDER

12 July 2016

Specialist Journeys, one of the UK’s leading providers of small group, expert-led specialist, educational and themed travel holidays, has acquired Brightwater Holidays following a significant funding package from Santander Corporate & Commercial.

Specialist Journeys, which has offices in Salisbury, Petersfield and New York, is a multi-brand group of four leading specialist tour operators: Historical Trips, Archaeological Tours, Arblaster & Clarke Wine Tours, and award-winning Andante Travels. The brands, which offer guided small group tours in history, archaeology and wine experiences, are led by professionals and scholars in the relevant areas and provide its clients the highest quality travel experiences across the globe.

The acquisition of the Fife-based Brightwater Holidays, that specialises in garden tours in the UK and abroad, will increase further the group’s client base and opportunities for growth. Brightwater, which has been trading for 24 years, offers a variety of horticultural and special interest holidays, from cruises and island holidays to shorter, domestic coach trips for holiday-makers, private groups and organisations and societies.

Ian Finlay, CEO, Specialist Journeys, said: “The Brightwater acquisition is an exciting addition to our existing portfolio of brands and provides us with the ability to broaden our holiday offerings to our existing customer base, as well as attracting new customers, in response to the growing demand for high quality, expert-led travel. We are delighted to start a new partnership with Santander and to have their support both domestically and internationally as we grow the business.”

Carmen Peacock, Structured Finance, Santander Corporate & Commercial: “Specialist Journeys is a leading provider of travel experiences and we are delighted to support them in implementing their strategy. The acquisition of Brightwater Holidays is of significant importance to their wider portfolio of brands, providing a complementary offering to the same target market. As a bank, we look forward to continue working with this experienced management team and Kings Park Capital, the group’s financial sponsor, through the business’s next phase of growth.”

ENDS

The information contained in this press release is intended solely for journalists and should not be used by consumers to make financial decisions.

Notes to editors

For Specialist Journeys Ltd. media enquiries, please contact:
Colin Parselle (CFO)
01772 713 803/ colin@specialistjourneys.com

For Santander Corporate & Commercial media enquiries, please contact:
Bijal Tanna                    020 7756 4189      Mobile: 07860 259 217
Leonora Burtenshaw      020 7756 4543      Mobile: 07701 004 107
The Santander Corporate & Commercial press office operates from 8.00am to 6.00pm. Outside of these hours please call 0800 5877708.