Thomas Cook reviews brand positioning after profit fall

Thomas Cook Group is reviewing the positioning of its holiday brands after posting its third profit warning in less than 12 months.

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The holiday company – which owns the Thomas Cook and Going Places brands – says it has begun a “fundamental strategic and operational review” of the business.

A spokeswoman for Thomas Cook says the review will look at the company’s current business model, prevailing consumer trends and how its brands are positioned. It will also assess whether it has the right mix of products, be it luxury or all-inclusive.

Third quarter results, the company says, “will be behind expectations” with operating profit for the three months to 30 June likely to be about £20m, £5m less than a year earlier.

Full-year profit is now expected to be £320m, down from £362.2m the previous year.

The company blamed “difficult” trading conditions in the UK because of “the continued squeeze” on disposable incomes. Continued unrest in the key Middle Eastern and North Africa destinations of Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco drove down income from its French business, the company adds.

Thomas Cook warned of problems in its UK business in March because of the reluctance of cash-strapped consumers to book holidays. In February, it estimated that the uprisings in North Africa had cost it £20m.

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