Thousands of jobs could be saved as independent travel agent Hays Travel based in Sunderland has agreed to buy the 'entire retail portfolio' of 555 Thomas Cook stores.
Hays has already recruited or offered work to hundreds of former Thomas Cook staff after the holiday company collapsed last month.
Hays Travel is proposing to re-open the stores with immediate effect where possible and to take on up to 2,500 people.
Over 100 new jobs will be based at the company’s Sunderland headquarters with the rest in shops across the UK.
John and Irene Hays, managing director and group chair of Hays Travel, said:
When news of Thomas Cook's collapse broke, John Hays, Managing Director of Hays Travel, told ITV News Tyne Tees,