It’s getting to be one big travel-industry family under the KKR umbrella, as Europe Express parent Travelopia joins Apple Travel Group as part of the private equity group in June.
Travelopia was formed six months ago when TUI Travel divested of a number of businesses it said were not core to its strategy of mass-market tourism. The Travelopia umbrella includes 53 independent travel companies with a combined international customer base of more than 800,000 travelers and 70 destinations around the world. Then in February, Travelopia acquired Europe Express, based in Bothell, WA.
TUI then sold Travelopia to KKR, a multinational private equity group based in NY. KKR in December also acquired Apple Leisure Group, parent of AMResorts, Apple Vacations and CheapCaribbean.com; its holdings also include U.K.-based Queens Moat Hotels, Toys R Us and credit-card processor First Data Corp.
Travel agents and clients should see no change, Europe Express told TMR this week, predicting “business as usual” all around.