A multi-million-pound takeover of Baldwins Travel by business group Inc & Co has been completed.
The new company says the deal secures the travel agency’s high-street presence across Sussex and Kent.
Established over 120 years ago, the Tunbridge Wells-headquartered company currently employs more than 50 staff across eight branches, all of which will be protected under the move to the new owner.
The acquisition of the business - established in 1895 - follows a challenging year for travel, but its new owners say the investment will allow it to navigate its way out of the difficulties presented to the sector during the pandemic.
Originally a bookbinder and stationer that started selling rail tickets, Baldwins grew to become one of the largest travel operators across the south coast.
It currently has a high street presence across Tunbridge Wells, Cranbrook, Lewes, Maidstone, Sevenoaks, Tenterden, Tonbridge and Uckfield.
Jack Mason, group chief executive of Inc & Co, said: “We’re really excited to announce Inc & Co’s acquisition of Baldwins Travel, and we’ll be warmly welcoming the brand into our growing portfolio of businesses.
“Although it’s been a difficult year for the wider sector, we’re delighted to be in a position to secure the futures of Baldwins’ employees and branches across Kent and Sussex.
“Since our founding in 2019, we’ve grown the number of businesses we oversee and our employee headcount, from just five to 750 across 15 brands.
“We’re really excited to bring Baldwins’ established brand heritage and the expertise of its long-serving staff into the Inc & Co family.”
Through the deal, Inc & Co will take on any existing payments due, tour operators will receive all monies owing and all customers will be refunded any outstanding payments.
Chris and Nick Marks - former Baldwins owners - will continue to remain within the business.