Duke Street Capital’s Acquisition of Great Rail Journeys

Ropes & Gray has advised Duke Street Capital, a UK-based mid-market private equity firm – and another new client for the firm – on its acquisition of Great Rail Journeys, the world’s leading provider of escorted rail holidays, from ECI.

The terms of the transaction have not been disclosed.

Great Rail Journeys offers almost 400 itineraries to over 50 countries globally, catering for a growing demographic group of culturally interested 55+ year old travellers. Over the last five years the company has performed strongly, tapping into new source markets for its rail tours including Australia and more recently the US. The business has also just launched a unique rail based premium river cruise offering. Duke Street plans to support the existing management team to develop the business’ rail and cruise offerings further, both in the UK and internationally, building on their significant experience in the leisure sector.

The Ropes & Gray team was led by private equity partners Phil Sanderson (Picture) and John Newton, with finance partner Malcolm Hitching leading on the debt aspects of the deal. Other members of the team included private equity associates Tarun Patel (acquisition) and Victoria McGrath (equity) and finance associate Nick Cusack (finance).

Involved fees earner: Philip Sanderson – Ropes & Gray; John Newton – Ropes & Gray; Tarun Patel – Ropes & Gray; Victoria McGrath – Ropes & Gray; Malcolm Hitching – Ropes & Gray; Nick Cusack – Ropes & Gray;

Law Firms: Ropes & Gray;

Clients: Duke Street;