After the successful sale of a number of successful Australian tourism business’, the owners of the Red Cat Adventures Group approached Nash Advisory to assist in the divestment of their business.
The Red Cat Adventures Group, located in the spectacular Queensland Whitsundays – the heart of the Great Barrier Reef – offers award-winning marine and land-based tourism experiences through its three industry-leading brands (Red Cat Adventures, Wildcat, and Whitsunday Jetski Tours).
The business has performed exceptionally well due to the care it shows its customers, staff, and the sensitive environment in which the business operates. In 2021, Red Cat Adventures, in 2021 were the first operators in Queensland Tourism Awards 36-year history to win double Hall of Fame. The business is also proud to be a certified Climate Action Leader and leading eco-friendly educational experience provider.
The Red Cat Adventure Group was sold to Sealink Marine & Tourism (subsidiary of ASX-listed Kelsian Group) in November 2023.
Tourism, Outdoor Adventure
The owners of the Red Cat Adventures Group initially approached Nash Advisory just prior to COVID in March 2020. After initial discussions, it was decided to postpone with the sale post-COVID. COVID provided time for the Owners to review their business in detail, resulting in the addition and streamlining of new products, including the acquisition of the local Whitsunday Jetski Tour business.
Following refinement of the business model and a surge in local tourism, the Owners had been regularly approached for growing the business further and wanted to find a partner that could provide the appropriate capital and resourcing requirements to help facilitate the next stage of growth.
A key concern of the Buyers was to ensure that all staff were kept and remained happy, and that the customer experience and preservation of the environment was maintained.
As the business was made up of multiple divisions, there were many booking systems used to account for PAX data and revenue for accounting purposes. The business had been reporting primarily by cash accounting (i.e., when the payments had been made). Nash reconciled all booking source data back to the accounting software, and then ensured the data was presented appropriately in accrual format (i.e., by travel date). This was important so interested parties could easily understand the historical trading of the business comparatively to their own business.
It was important to demonstrate that the assets were highly profitable, driven by their high utilisation rates. As the bookings systems had been reconciled and consolidated, this was able to be shown by product on a per tour basis. Nash was able to also show the level of demand that remained for the products despite them being booked out, providing further confidence to the Buyer that additional assets would also be utilised.
There were multiple growth initiatives available to the business which were well developed by management. Nash advised the business to launch these products which included a new premium outer-reef tour, a new sunset tour in Airlie Beach, and in designing and purchasing additional vessels for the popular products where demand was supported.
Following COVID and the challenges it provided, particularly to remote destinations, it became apparent that Airlie Beach had become the pre-eminent destination in the Whitsundays. As the business was based in Airlie Beach, it was important to show it had become the preferred destination to stay and tour from.
Nash Advisory was engaged in 2020 just prior to COVID. The engagement was put on hold and several strategic initiatives were provided by Nash to enhance the sale value of the business prior to re-engaging post-COVID.
Nash Advisory was re-engaged in 2023 to conduct a sale of the Red Cat Adventures Group.
Nash requested and received source data from all booking platforms, reconciled the data back to accounting information and presented the data on a consolidated basis clearly. Following this, Nash began drafting the Information Memorandum.
Information Memorandum finalised and sent to Interested Parties.
Initial query responses to interested Parties and site visits with Interested Parties held at Airlie Beach & Mackay.
Non-Indicative Binding Offer (NBIO) received from Interested Parties, and after negotiations, proceeded to deal exclusively with one party and engage in due diligence.
Due diligence concluded, which included financial due diligence, legal due diligence, including review of leases and permits, operational due diligence including asset inspections and multiple site visits.
The transaction was signed by the Buyer & Seller.
Transaction to complete following transfer of leases, licences & permits.
When it comes to selling your business, Nash Advisory offers a highly detailed and extremely thorough process that produces the best possible results.