Oct 31 (Reuters) - British holiday company Thomas Cook Group Plc said on Wednesday it would open 20 own-brand hotels by the end of 2019 including six in Spain, four in Greece and three in Turkey.
The company, which sends holidaymakers to about 3,000 hotels across destinations from the Mediterranean to the Caribbean and elsewhere, said it would also announce further new openings, which would take the company’s portfolio to 200 hotels with about 40,000 rooms.
The expansion comes as Thomas Cook cut its 2018 profit forecast, blaming a heatwave in northern Europe for hitting demand in the most profitable part of the summer season and hurting winter trading.
The company, which pioneered the package holiday concept when it was set up in 1841, also said it removed nine hotels that did not meet brand quality standards.
Thomas Cook evacuated 301 of its customers from a hotel in Egypt’s popular Red Sea resort of Hurghada in August as a precautionary measure after two of its holidaymakers died. Egypt’s public prosecutor later said that e-coli bacteria were a factor in the deaths. (Reporting by Karina Dsouza in Bengaluru Editing by Alexandra Hudson)