Holiday parks operators are set to merge in £960m deal
The UK's biggest holiday park operator is to be created in a £960m merger deal.
Parkdean and Park Resorts are joining forces to form a combined business with 73 sites serving 1.8 million customers.
The firms said the merger would tie up Parkdean's strength in the South West and Scotland with Park Resorts, whose sites are mainly on the East coast and in the North West including the Lake District, to create a UK-wide business.
Parkdean has 24 family holiday parks in woodland, coastal and countryside locations from Newquay in Cornwall to Nairn in the Highlands.
Park Resorts has 49 sites including at Camber Sands in East Sussex and by Windermere in the Lake District.
The annual turnover of the two groups combined is £370m, with underlying earnings of around £92m.
Park Resorts is majority-controlled by private equity group Electra, which first invested in the company in 2012, and whose other investments have included Sheila's Wheels insurer esure. The deal will see a new refinancing for the business which will take Electra's cash proceeds from the company to £106m, 81% of its original investment cost.
Parkdean is majority-owned by another private equity firm, Alchemy. Both Alchemy and Electra will retain stakes in the new business.