Cross-border acquisition

Hotelplan buys German dynamic tour operator Vtours

Achim Schneider (left) and Thomas Stirnimann
VTours und Hotelplan
Achim Schneider (left) and Thomas Stirnimann

Switzerland’s Hotelplan Group is making a move into the German tourism market with the takeover of dynamic tour operator Vtours.

The Swiss group is buying the German company, including its Vtours International subsidiary, for an undisclosed sum. Both brands will continue to trade autonomously under their established names under the management of CEO Achim Schneider, the former owner.

“With Vtours we have achieved a success story over the last 15 years, and we’re delighted to have a strong partner at our side for our future development,” Schneider said. “Through the merger, we can become active not only in Germany, Austria and Switzerland but throughout Europe, and benefit above all from the technological expertise of the Hotelplan Group,” he added.

Hotelplan Group CEO Thomas Stirnimann described Vtours as a “profitable, creative, innovative and growing provider” and said it offered “ideal complementary” synergy potential in IT, procurement and sales to grow in the German-speaking markets.

Vtours, with 150 employees, generates annual turnover of more than €400 million. The pioneer of dynamic holiday packages in Germany now offers holidays in about 7,000 hotels in 195 destinations, selling through travel agencies and online via OTAs.

The Hotelplan Group, with turnover of CHF 1.4 billion (€1.3 billion) last year, is the largest Swiss-owned tourism group. To date it has only been active in the German market through its holiday home businesses InterChalet and Interhome.