Global travel specialist Emerald Global Limited, also trading as People’s Travel, has been placed in administration, with more than 20 UK employees set to be made redundant.
Neil Gostelow and Steve Absolom from KPMG’s restructuring practice were appointed joint administrators to London-based Emerald Global on Friday (9 April).
The firm was founded in 1980, specialising in tailor-made independent and group travel. Its core flight consolidator business sold flights on behalf of 75 airlines, trading under the eConsol brand.
It also operated a direct-to-consumer business, trading as People’s Travel, as well as a travel management platform, providing corporate travel services to corporates and embassies under the Emerald TMC brand.
Additionally, Emerald Global was a majority shareholder in Malaysian subsidiary Emerald Global Services, serving as a support hub and 24-hour client service centre for the UK business.
The joint administrators have sold Emerald Global’s flight consolidation business and the shares in its Malaysian subsidiary to AERTiCKET Emerald UK Limited, a subsidiary of AERTiCKET Conso, a major European airline ticket wholesaler.
Four UK jobs have been saved, along with around 40 in Malaysia. However, 23 UK employees have been made redundant.
Gostelow said: "The impact of Covid-19 on the international travel sector has been devastating. The continued uncertainty in the sector’s recovery has ultimately led to administration for this long-standing family-owned business, which prior to the pandemic had a loyal and fast-growing customer base."
Absolom added: "Our immediate priority is to assist those employees who have been made redundant with the support and assistance they require to make claims to the Redundancy Payments Service.
"We are also seeking to realise the assets of the direct-to-consumer and corporate travel management businesses and encourage any interested parties to contact us at the earliest opportunity."
People’s Travel was a member of Abta (P7208), based in London’s Baker Street and claiming to be a travel shop "with a difference".
"We do not have walls of brochure racks, cluttered windows and impersonal desk structures," reads the firm’s website. "Instead, the emphasis is on people, with comfortable discussion nooks and interactive touch-screens giving clients immediate access to the perfect holiday.
"Our operation is designed to give clients the best in customer service. Staff come from a wide range of backgrounds with expertise in everything from cruising through to honeymoon and gay and lesbian travel."