Thomas Cook India Group, the leading integrated travel services group, has announced its acquisition of a 51% stake in Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging (DEI), one of the world’s leading imaging solutions and services providers at an enterprise value of $40.6mn (Rs289cr). The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.
The acquisition marks the Thomas Cook India Group’s entry into an adjacent sector, complementary to its travel & travel related services portfolio and is both PAT and free cash accretive from day one.
Established in 2004, Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging is a technology driven company with offices in Singapore, Dubai, Mumbai, Orlando, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur. DEI focuses on imaging solutions for the attractions industry with a robust end-to-end turnkey model by providing equipment, software, talent and operational expertise consultation to its business partners.
With a strong network of over 120 partners, DEI is present at more than 250 venues spanning over 14 countries (Singapore, UAE, Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, China, USA, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Mauritius, Maldives, Egypt, India and Kuwait), and has completed 3.6 million transactions in 2018.
DEI’s partner attractions encompass waterparks, theme parks, aquariums, towers and resorts, including iconic attractions in Singapore (Universal Studios Singapore, Marina Bay Sands, Singapore Zoo), Hong Kong (Ngong Ping 360), Macau (Macau Tower, The Venetian, Macao), the UAE (At The Top Burj Khalifa, Ski Dubai, Wild Wadi Waterpark, Warner Brothers, Ferrari World), Malaysia (Petronas Twin Towers, Resorts World Genting), China (Atlantis Sanya, Chimelong Safari Park), India (Ramoji Film City, Imagica, Wonderla Holidays Ltd.), Maldives (Taj Exotica, W Retreat & Spa, Shangri-La Villingili), Mauritius (St. Regis Mauritius Resort, Shanti Maurice Resort & Spa), Indonesia (Waterbom Bali, Bali Zoo, Trans Studio), Egypt (Ski Egypt, KidZania), Thailand (Ramayana Water Park, Vana Nava Water Jungle), USA (Hard Rock Café New York, Mango’s Tropical Café and Gaylord), to name a few.
In 2017, DEI launched KlassAkt, its school photography arm, and has already partnered with more than 90 schools across the UAE and India, including the prestigious GEMS group of schools in the UAE, the Oberoi International School, Jamnabai Narsee International School and Aditya Birla World Academy in Mumbai, India.
Madhavan Menon, Chairman and Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Limited
said, “Our acquisition of DEI, a global imaging solutions and services giant, presents the Thomas Cook India Group an opportunity to participate in an exciting new business space, adjacent to our core travel services portfolio that is both PAT and free cash accretive from day one. DEI is an entrepreneurial success story with an impressive and proven track record of leadership, growth and profitability.”
He elaborated, “With several key markets in common, the addition of Ram and his team at DEI to our family, also presents new synergistic opportunities leveraging our travel services across 25 countries. We see an immediate opportunity for our outbound customers from India and Hong Kong, as well as our inbound and DMS customers across our global network. With the growing demand for experiential travel and social sharing, DEI’s partnerships with iconic attractions, theme parks, water parks and resorts will further enhance our travel services portfolio in line with our philosophy of creating long term shareholder value.”
K.S. Ramakrishnan, founder CEO and President of Digiphoto Entertainment Imaging
said, “Our synergy with Thomas Cook India Group in the travel and tourism ecosystem strengthens DEI’s position in our existing markets whilst giving us immense reach to expand. DEI is leading the digital transformation of the guest photo journey through NFC, facial recognition and other state of the art proprietary technology enabling the guest to receive and share their memories in real time. We are proud to be part of a globally renowned travel and tourism leader, the Thomas Cook India Group. Innovation being key to DEI’s core entrepreneurial spirit with focus on long-term partnerships aligns us perfectly with the vision and ethos of Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited.”