Montreal, July 13, 2007
Transat A.T. Inc., one of largest integrated tourism companies in the world and Canada’s holiday travel leader, is acquiring French outgoing tour operator Amplitude Internationale, which specializes in travel to Tunisia and has sales of €35 million (approximately CAN$50 million), for approximately CAN$5 million.
“This strengthens our position in Tunisia, a strategic destination where we are already very active through our Look Voyages business unit, which operates four all-inclusive Lookéa resort clubs there,” said Jean-Marc Eustache, President and Chief Executive Officer of Transat A.T. Inc. “Look Voyages and Amplitude Internationale have complementary products and distribution networks, giving us strength in the still-fragmented France-to-Tunisia market segment.”
Paris-based Amplitude Internationale, founded in 1992, sells travel products to Tunisia to some 80,000 French citizens every year through traditional and online travel agencies, as well as through large retail stores. Amplitude Internationale is profitable and the acquisition will have an immediately favourable impact on Transat’s per-share earnings. Amplitude Internationale’s founder and President, Sam Zribi, will remain at the firm’s helm.
For its part, Look Voyages, a Transat business unit since 1996, expects to sell nearly 50,000 packages to Tunisia in 2007. Look Voyages posted sales of nearly €150 million (CAN $215 million) in 2006 and over the years has become a French specialist in the resort club formula, operating 25 Lookéa clubs in 2007 in Bulgaria, Croatia, Cuba, Egypt, Spain, Greece, Italy (Sicily), Mauritius, Morocco, Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Senegal, Tunisia and Turkey.
Tunisia welcomes over 6 million international tourists every year, 10% of whom are French citizens who have purchased a package. “Looking at the packages segment — Transat’s core business — Tunisia is the second-largest destination market out of France, after Morocco, and this transaction fits perfectly with our strategic plan,” Mr. Eustache said. “We want to be a leader in our main markets. France-to-Tunisia is one of them and Amplitude Internationale and Look Voyages form a very promising team.”
This acquisition also increases Transat’s size in France, as Amplitude Internationale joins the company’s other tour operators in the country: Vacances Transat (the leading tour operator to North America, as well as a specialist on Scandinavia and on a variety of long-haul destinations), Brokair (group-tour operator) and Look Voyages (resort club specialist with an extensive range of packages and cruises). Transat also operates more than 70 travel agencies in France under the Club Voyages and Look Voyages banners.
Transat A.T. Inc. is an integrated international tour operator with more than 60 destination countries and that distributes products in over 50 countries. A holiday travel specialist, Transat operates mainly in Canada and Europe, as well as in the Caribbean, Mexico and the Mediterranean Basin. Montreal-based Transat is also active in air transportation, destination services and distribution. (TSX: TRZ.B, TRZ.A)