WestLB confirms aim to sell stake in TUI

20th August 2004, Comments 0 comments

20 August 2004, DUESSELDORF - WestLB, the bank of the German state North Rhine-Westfalia, confirmed its intention Friday to sell its 31.3 percent stake in the travel concern TUI, but said it would not comment further while negotiations were going on. The bank said the stake would be sold either to a single investor or to a consortium of investors. The disclosure came amid further speculation about the future ownership of Europe's largest tourism concern, with one Spanish travel group meanwhile denying it i

20 August 2004

DUESSELDORF - WestLB, the bank of the German state North Rhine-Westfalia, confirmed its intention Friday to sell its 31.3 percent stake in the travel concern TUI, but said it would not comment further while negotiations were going on.

The bank said the stake would be sold either to a single investor or to a consortium of investors.

The disclosure came amid further speculation about the future ownership of Europe's largest tourism concern, with one Spanish travel group meanwhile denying it is bidding for the WestLB state.

The Barcelo group denied reports during the week in the German magazine Der Spiegel and in Mallorca Magazine that it had presented WestLB an offer for the TUI stake.

Barcelo operates 127 hotels in 16 countries.

Der Spiegel, in its report, had said that Spanish hotel groups, including Barcelo, Sol Melia, and NH, were interested in the TUI stake in order to keep German travel booking for their hotels in Spain and the vacation island Mallorca.

The Spaniards have been watching with a certain unease the competition for TUI bookings posed by such cheaper holiday destinations as Turkey, Egypt, Cuba or the Dominican Republic, the weekly magazine had reported.

WestLB's announcement of its aims to sell its TUI stake sent the travel company's shares dropping sharply on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. At mid-morning Friday, TUI stocks were down 2.35 percent to EUR 14.97.

DPA

Subject: German news
 

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