WHSmith has bought US travel retailer InMotion in a bid to strengthen its grip on the international travel market.
The £155m acquisition doubles the size of WHSmith’s international travel business in terms of both sales and profits. It will allow it to launch its airport format in the US and expand the InMotion format internationally.
InMotion mainly sells consumer electronics and travel accessories such as headphones and portable chargers.
WHSmith chief executive Stephen Clarke said: “The acquisition of InMotion is an exciting value-creation opportunity for the WHSmith group and marks a major step in our international travel retail growth strategy.”
Clarke said that both the US travel market and digital accessories market were growing quickly and WHSmith was now well positioned to take advantage of that.
He added that the retailer had been actively searching for acquisition opportunities to expand its travel business and did not rule out further acquisitions in “the fullness of time”.
WHSmith’s travel division is its growth engine. The international travel business has grown rapidly in recent years, fuelled by increasing traveller numbers and the rise of convenience shopping.