Intrepid Travel acquires majority stake in New Zealand's Haka Tours
Global travel B Corp kicks off future growth plans with a 60 per cent stake in cultural and adventure tourism brands.
Intrepid Travel has secured a majority share in New Zealand’s Haka Tours and ANZ Nature Tours – the first acquisition for the world’s largest adventure company since the pandemic began.
The two touring brands of Haka Tours and ANZ Nature Tours each offer a range of culturally rich tourism experiences for both the local and international inbound markets. The acquisition bolsters Intrepid’s operational capability in New Zealand and allows it to leverage its global distribution capability to scale rapidly as local travel, as well as international tourism, recovers.
With offices in both Auckland and Wellington, Haka was established by Founder and CEO Ryan Sanders in 2007. Sanders will remain a board member and shareholder in the business. Haka Tours’ board is chaired by Intrepid CEO James Thornton and includes Intrepid’s Chief Operating Officer, Tom Beadle.
Under the agreement, Haka’s team will return to their regular hours, after having worked reduced time for much of the pandemic. Eve Lawrence, current Haka Tours GM will lead the business on a day-to-day basis.
Both Haka brands have a focus on immersive and authentic Māori experiences. This is significant for Intrepid’s aim to support the growth of First Nations tourism via its range of 1,150+ trips throughout the world. The NZ business engages a Māori cultural advisor and offers annual Māori tourism scholarships.
“Travel is back – and we’re excited to kick off our new phase of growth with this first announcement,” said Intrepid Travel’s CEO, James Thornton.
“New Zealand is really important to us and I can’t think of a better place for Intrepid to be expanding – both from an inbound and outbound perspective. New Zealand is our largest outbound market per capita of population. The country is also renowned as an international tourism destination – pre-Covid we struggled to meet demand and we expect it to bounce back really strongly in 2022,” he added.
Intrepid’s 2025 growth strategy sees the business expanding its local travel offering globally and leveraging its vertical integration capabilities.
Intrepid is the largest travel B Corp globally and Haka will look to become a B Corp as well, making it part of a global community of businesses balancing purpose and profit.
“This marks the next phase in Haka’s growth journey,” said Ryan Sanders, Founder of Haka Tours. “I started Haka with the vision to do things differently and share our land and culture with people who had a passion for adventure and travelling the local way. Together with Intrepid we’ll continue to do just that.”