Investment December 2004

Business School Travel

Growth StrategyM&A

Why we invested

School travel is an attractive market, driven by the growing recognition of the educational value of teacher-supervised school trips, and increased outsourcing by teachers to professional tour operators. At the time of our investment, the industry was consolidating due to growing regulatory pressures on smaller operators, and this was an opportunity to back a strong management team to lead the sector consolidation.

Sales growth


The result

School Travel Group completed and successfully integrated four acquisitions over a three-year period, resulting in a significant growth in both sales and profits. In 2007, The School Travel Group merged with Kingswood, another Bowmark portfolio company, to form a business with a major presence in each segment of the educational travel market – activity and adventure, ski and educational tours.

In 2008, the merged group was sold to DLJ Merchant Banking Partners for £100 million.

By enabling us to consolidate a group of individually successful businesses in our target markets, Bowmark helped create a one-stop shop that provides the entire range of educational travel solutions, from Primary School through to University, enabling student learning through educational travel. Terry Williamson,Chief Executive