Travelzest bosses Mottershead and McKinlay in talks to quit group for TUI

Travelzest is today in talks with its chief executive Chris Mottershead and finance director Colin McKinlay following news they are to quit the group to run TUI Travel’s Canadian operation.

Travelzest confirmed this morning it was in talks with Mottershead and McKinlay over their employment terms but said it had not received resignation letters from either. “A further announcement will be made when appropriate,” the company said in a statement.

The company is holding its annual general meeting at midday on Wednesday when the pair are expected to formally resign.

The news follows the collapse of the sale of Travelzest last November. TUI Travel was rumoured to be on the verge of acquiring Travelzest for £28 million before the deal was scrapped because of the economic climate.  TUI was understood to be particularly interested in Travelzest’s two Canadian businesses; luxury cruise specialist The Cruise Professionals and online travel agency itravel2000 as they would allow TUI to get its first foothold in Canada.

Mottershead was managing director of TUI UK from 2002 to 2004 and previously worked in Canada when he headed up Airtours’ North America Leisure Group.

TUI Travel would not comment.

More information:

* Travelzest deal scrapped (Travel Weekly, November 12 2008)
* Travelzest acquisition offer due next month (Travel Weekly, November 4 2008)
* TUI in possible acquisition deal with Travelzest (Travel Weekly, September 4 2008)
* Travelzest buys Canadian luxury cruise operator (Travel Weekly, June 20 2008)

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