Thuesen and Vase together

DER Touristik Group is disposing of its small Scandinavian airline Novair in an asset sale deal to streamline its European portfolio and focus on core business. The German group is selling the Scandinavian carrier to the Jet Nordic Group for an undisclosed sum.

The transaction is due for completion in August. Novair, which operates just two A321 Neos, flies about 240,000 passengers a year to holiday destinations, mostly in southern Europe. Together with tour operator Apollo, it comprises DER Touristik Nordic. It became part of the German group with the acquisition of Kuoni’s European tour operator businesses several years ago.

“Not core business”

But DER Touristik Group CEO Sören Hartmann explained that running an airline is not a core business for the leisure travel group, which primarily consists of tour operators, travel agents and hotels.

“Our core competence lies in organizing and selling trips. Operating our own airline does not form part of our core business,” he made clear. “Instead, we agree on strong alliances with selected airline partners for our customers.”

As a result, the group is now implementing its plan of disposing of the airline which it acquired as part of the acquisition of Kuoni’s European tour operators several years ago, he continued.

Strategic partnership

However, the German company, which is the second-largest European tourism group after TUI, stressed that it will seal a long-term strategic partnership with Novair’s new owners. This will provide capacity for Apollo and ensure good utilization of the two aircraft.

Leif Vase Larsen, CEO of DER Touristik Northern Europe, explained: “This is a plan for the future. We believe that the travel business will recover significantly in the post-corona era. Jointly, Apollo and Jet Nordic Group can offer even more flight capacity and focus fully on customers.”

Lars Thuesen, owner of Jet Nordic Group, commented: “I’m buying a very well-run airline that has flown Apollo’s customers for more than 20 years. Together with our 500,000 passengers to date, our two companies will create a strong Nordic growth platform.”