Sykes announces UKcaravans4hire acquisition

UK: Holiday rental agency Sykes Holiday Cottages has announced the acquisition of Huddersfield-based static caravan rental website UKcaravans4hire.

The move marks a new direction for Sykes as it enters the static caravan holiday market for the first time, diversifying its range of rental properties as it works towards becoming the top UK-focused alternative accommodation platform.

Established more than ten years ago, UKcaravans4hire connects holidaymakers to more than 6,000 holiday homes located across the UK.

Following the acquisition, UKcaravans4hire will continue to be run independently by its existing leadership teams but will sit under a newly-formed parent company.

The deal follows Sykes’ acquisition of Forest Holidays, an owner and operator of “environmentally sensitive” cabins, as it seeks to create a diversified holiday specialist group.

The combined group of businesses under Sykes’ leadership, whose own platform provides access to more than 22,500 holiday homes, is estimated to take more than 2.65 million customers on holiday this year, according to Sykes. The group employs over 1,700 people and is on track to deliver over £170 million of revenue in 2022.

Sykes CEO Graham Donoghue said: “As the UK’s leading provider of static caravan rentals, UKcaravans4hire is the perfect business to have by our side as we enter into this new market, offering UK holidaymakers an unmatched choice of affordable and high-quality accommodation.

“It’s a transformative time for Sykes as we accelerate our ambitions to become the leading name for UK tourism. We see huge potential in UKcaravans4hire to serve what is currently an underserved market, applying our expertise and market-leading technology to grow the business and catapult it to even greater success,” he added.

Gareth Irving, founder and CEO of UKcaravans4hire, said: “This deal represents a new chapter for our business and I know with Sykes’ expertise and support we’ll be able to build on the huge success we’ve already had over the past two decades.

“Looking ahead, we’re ideally placed to reap the rewards of growing demand for affordable staycations, working with Sykes to grow our business and promote our holiday homes to a wider audience,” he added.

Sykes is backed by Vitruvian Partners and was advised by Springboard Corporate Finance, Hill Dickinson LLP and Mayer Brown International LLP on the deal. UKcaravans4hire was advised by Symmetry Corporate Finance.