Expolanka Holdings PLC today acquired the controlling stake in Akquasun Holidays India (Pvt) Ltd - at a cost of USD 915,000, thus further consolidating both its presence and strength in the leisure and travel sectors.
Akquasun Holidays, the Mumbai-based destination management specialist is a B2B Destination Management network company. Primarily mandated to attracting traffic from emerging markets like India, Russia and China, it is part of the travel and leisure cluster of the Expolanka Group which also includes Luxe Asia which focuses on inbound high-end tourists, and Classic Travels, the leading outbound travel company.
Says Group Chief Executive of Expolanka Holdings Hanif Yusoof, “This acquisition gives us greater impetus and strength to operate in a high growth industry such as the tourism sector and thereby help to further swell tourist figures to Sri Lanka. It can be seen that China, India and Russia with their population densities are now vibrant markets from where significant numbers travel to Sri Lanka and many other countries in the Asia region. This is seamlessly facilitated by Akquasan’s wide global network of its own offices in the Maldives, Mauritius, Hong Kong, China, Dubai, Tanzania, South Africa, UK, Russia and the USA.”
As part of its drive towards expanding its business further, Akquasun Holidays India (Pvt) Ltd invited Expolanka to be a part of this exercise. Based on a careful and long thought out Investment Appraisal, Expolanka invested up to 50% of the equity shares with management control of Akquasun Holidays India (Pvt) Ltd.
This strongly positions Expolanka as a leading player in the tourism Industry with a strong global footprint. It also provides a great opportunity for Expolanka to further strengthen its position in the local tourism Industry while enabling it to enhance its profit objectives as well.
India’s tourism sector has shown tremendous potential over the past few years witnessing an average growth rate of 9% - 10% over the last five years. The country had experienced approximately 12 Mn outbound Indian tourists during 2010. This clearly indicates the vibrancy of the outbound Indian tourism market, the upward mobility of the average Indian citizen, the explosion of Indian Airlines, development in the aviation industry, all of which point to continued growth that can be visible for many years into the future.
Tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka have grown by almost 46% for the year 2010 with 650,000 tourists. Among the major tourist originating countries are USA, UK, Germany, Australia and Japan. The accolades Sri Lanka has received as one of the best travel destinations has resulted in this large increase. Current statistics indicate that India is the second largest tourism destination country for Sri Lanka (after Australia) and contributes almost 19% of tourist arrivals to Sri Lanka.
“Sri Lanka is currently on a drive to reach its 2.5 millionth tourist by 2015. With our leisure and travel arms now strengthened, I’m confident that we can help the country fast reach this watershed and thus take Sri Lanka’s tourism industry to the next level”, he added.
Expolanka Holdings is a diversified conglomerate whose areas of activity range from transportation and manufacturing to international trading and strategic investments.
Caption for PHOTO : In the photo (L to R) are Group Director and CEO Akquasun Group B.A. Rahim, Group Chief Executive of Expolanka Holdings Hanif Yusoof and Founder & Group MD Akquasun Group Sujit Nair.
About the Akquasun Group : Established in 2005 Akquasun Holidays is a global Destination Management and Representation company which sells destinations where it owns and manages its own DMC. It operates as a B2B company and works with agents, tour operators and events specialists to deliver Groups and FIT’s, MICE, Back to back tours, Hotel bookings, Transfers and excursions, Luxury holidays, Special interest tours and Events. Its network of offices strategically spans the world catering to some of the largest emerging and established tourism markets. Its operation network currently spans 4 continents and 11 destinations and will grow in the next few years to cover all the major tourism destinations. Headquartered in Mumbai, Akquasun has a network of sales offices in India covering Chennai, Bangalore, Calicut, Kolkata and Delhi. India is the leading market for Akquasun Group that services its own DMC’s with new markets opening up through its network of offices worldwide.