Cox & Kings plans Rs2,000-crore acquisition war-chest

Cox & Kings, one of India's oldest travel company is seeking shareholder's nod to raise up to Rs2,000 crore through debt and equity to fund its domestic and overseas acquisitions as it gears up to meet a resurgence in the travel industry after two years of slump bought on by the recession.

"We have sought our board's approval to raise Rs1,000 crore equity and Rs1,000-crore debt to fund our future expansion, which also includes merger and acquisition plans," chief financial officer of Cox and Kings (India), Anil Khandelwal told PTI.

The company plans to be ready with a war-chest of Rs2,000 crore to make acquisitions whenever the opportunity arises and hence has approached its board with the proposal to raise finance.

Cox & Kings, which has been operating in the country for more than 249 years, has yet not finalised its acquisition targets, but hopes to close a deal before the end of the current fiscal.

According to a leading global travel and technology distribution company, InterGlobe Technology Quotient, the country's travel industry is expected to expand by 5-6 per cent in 2010, which is 4.5 per cent higher than the expected rise in the global travel sector.

The coming Common Wealth Games in October 2010 will boost revenues for travel sector in India and would drive travel volumes both, from inbound overseas travel as well as from travel within the country.