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Argyll Holidays sold to Cove UK

04 02 22 Argyll Holidays sold to Cove Communities hero

Cove UK snaps up family portfolio of eight Scottish holiday parks.


Cove UK has established an instant foothold in the Scottish holiday parks sector after purchasing eight parks from Argyll Holidays. 

The confidential deal, for an undisclosed sum, was arranged by commercial real estate firm Colliers and corporate finance adviser DSW to enable the three directors and brothers Keith, Allan and Roy Campbell to begin their retirement. 

Argyll Holidays was established by their father Douglas Campbell in the 1960s and has been a family business ever since. The portfolio includes eight holiday parks with a total of around 1,800 pitches in Argyllshire, on the west coast of the country. More than 250 staff are employed by the business during peak season, which includes privately owned holiday homes as well as rental holiday accommodation, alongside food and beverage offerings.

The Argyll portfolio includes waterside, holiday villages Hunters Quay Holiday Village in Dunoon, Drimsynie Holiday Estate in Lochgoilhead, and Loch Lomond Holiday Park, set on the banks of the world-famous Loch Lomond.

Keith Campbell, director of Argyll Holidays, said: “We as a family have put heart and soul into developing our group of parks. We’ve invested in sustainability and kept quality at the heart of all our business practices resulting in multiple awards, including the ‘Scottish Family Business of the Year’, and thousands of satisfied holiday home owners and holiday guests. Whilst we have been approached over the years by different buyers, Cove was the first company that we felt understood what we stand for and could continue what we started. Cove is the ideal custodian of Argyll Holidays, sharing as we do, the same missions and values and commitment to the preservation and investment in the destinations we own.”

Cove UK is already an established holiday parks business in England with sites in Sussex (Medmerry and Seal Bay, formerly Bunn Leisure), Cornwall (Gwel an Mor) and Kings Park (Essex). It has an active acquisition programme in place, with further announcements anticipated early this year.

Mark Seaton, Cove UK Managing Director, added: “Argyll Holidays represents everything that Cove looks for: stunning properties, beautiful and unique locations, and an aspirational lifestyle offering. Simply put, they are the best at what they do. We are delighted to add Argyll to our portfolio and will continue the exceptional work that the Campbell family has started. Most importantly we will grow and develop the vision of Argyll under Cove, through sustainable business practices, a commitment to environmental conservation and investment in people and the local community.”

Richard Moss, head of UK Parks Agency at Colliers said: “It’s been great to bring together two companies who share a very similar ethos, allowing the outgoing directors to exit the business safe in the knowledge that the buyers understand and appreciate its history, the land and the customers. It’s a great credit to all involved that we have been able to conduct the deal behind closed doors to minimise business disturbance and maintain complete continuity for the customer.”

The parks sector has seen substantial activity recently with the arrival of private equity heavyweights Blackstone (acquired Bourne Leisure for circa £3billion) and CVC (acquired Away Resorts for a reported £250million before adding Aria Resorts and Coppergreen to their portfolio). In addition Sun Communities acquired Park Holidays for a reported £950m in November adding a further US presence in the market, alongside Cove who are already a well-established force following their acquisition of Bunn Leisure, one the UK’s largest holiday parks, in 2019.  

Richard added: “It’s a truly fascinating market place, with private equity giants, overseas investors, family offices and expanding private family businesses all jostling for position – our role is to match the best buyer to our client’s needs, whilst not impacting the trading business.”

The vendors were advised by Miller Beckett & Jackson (Legal), DSW (Financial) and Colliers. The buyers were advised by Fried Frank and DWF (Legal) and RSM (financial).

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Richard Moss

Head of UK Parks Agency

Parks Sports and Marinas

Leeds

Richard is the Head of UK Parks Agency for Colliers International. Having first obtained practical experience of the operation of a holiday park business, he now has 15 years experience in the sale and valuation of UK holiday parks.

He simultaneously obtained his degree in Estate Management and qualified as a Chartered Surveyor in November 2006.

Richard was promoted to Associate Director in January 2008, to Director in July 2010 and to Department Head in January 2013. 

Richard is recognised as one of the leading agents in this specialist field and continues to focus on providing agency advice to private, multiple and corporate holiday park operators and primarily covers the north of England and Scotland.

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Kim Inam

PR Manager

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London - West End

I'm a communications professional who has previously worked as a journalist for eight years covering a broad range of topics including politics, crime, health and housing in north London. In recent years I have worked in corporate communications for local authorities across London  and joined Colliers in October 2019, initially providing maternity leave cover.

I provide strategic public relations advice to various business lines within the UK organisation to secure recognition for their work in the property press as well as key target media, and work with our experts to produce thought leadership pieces which are of interest to our clients and colleagues within the commercial real estate sector. In addition, alongside colleagues in the PR and wider communications team, I provide media and social media training for our in-house experts to prepare them for media opportunities and raise their personal brand within the sector.

As well as supporting various teams within the UK business, I also I curate and edit regular content for the Colliers.com blog, which drives credible business leads to our experts.

 

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