EXCLUSIVE: Dales businessman buys Welcome to Yorkshire assets

Welcome to Yorkshire at Fan Zone Harrogate in 2019. Photo: Jennifer Petrie.

A company founded by a Wensleydale businessman has purchased assets belonging to Welcome to Yorkshire including the yorkshire.com domain.

Silicon Dales Ltd was the successful bidder for more than a 100 domains and websites owned by the former tourism agency.

Silicon Dales owner Robin Scott said he was unable to disclose how much he had paid for the assets but said it was “quite a lot”.

Silicon Dales, a technical ecommerce agency specialising in online shops and open source web projects, aims to relaunch the yorkshire.com website as soon as possible.

Although the company is currently has a registered office in Manchester, Robin said they had already agreed a deal to open new offices in York which would handle the relaunch and the management of other assets.

Robin said: “We are looking forward to welcoming back visitors and businesses to the relaunched Yorkshire.com.

“Originally, we’d come in very late to this deal, as we saw the domains had been listed for auction, but when we learned the opportunity was still there to get the websites and content, we moved very quickly to try to save the memory of the fantastic 2014 Grand Depart, as well attempting to preserve the legacy Tour de Yorkshire event.

“I’d like to thank everyone involved in Welcome to Yorkshire for their work promoting our region.

“We will make every effort to preserve the legacy of those efforts.

“Our specific plans for the remaining parts of the business are not yet confirmed, as we have been unable to engage with third parties since entering this transaction.”

Robin added: “Over the coming days and weeks, we’ll be reaching out to former members who listed with the old Welcome to Yorkshire to ask them how they’d like to shape the future project.

“In the future, Yorkshire.com will be aimed at marketing Yorkshire as a tourist destination to visitors from overseas.

“We will attract new people to the region, and bolster our great county’s tourism sector, which has – like the rest of us – endured a truly dreadful couple of years.

Trademarks and websites used for the Tour de Yorkshire were among the assets bought by the company — and Robin said they would be looking to consider whether relaunching the cycling race was viable.

“I’m now focussing on our first challenge, which is attempting to speak with all interested parties in order to try to save the Tour de Yorkshire.

“The clock is ticking on that very fast, and I can’t promise success, but we will pull out all the stops to make a deal happen for that fantastic cycling event.

“Finally, I’d like to thank Napthens Solicitors and the administrators Armstrong Watson for helping us reach a positive outcome so quickly.”

Grahame Love, of Napthens, said: “It’s been a pleasure to work with Silicon Dales Limited in bringing the transaction to fruition in a very short space of time.

“I wish them the very best of luck in reinvigorating the brand which their predecessors clearly worked hard to build.”

Rob Adamson, of the administrators Armstrong Watson LLP, said: “There was significant interest generated from the announcement that Welcome to Yorkshire had been placed into administration.

“Given the nature of the offers received, whilst we had received one offer that was much higher than all the others, the Joint Administrators requested that best and final offers be put forward.

“We proceeded with the offer that represented the best return to the creditors.

“The remaining employees will continue to assist the administrators in winding down the company’s affairs.

“All monies held separately in respect of advanced membership subscriptions will be returned and that process is now ongoing.”

2 Comments

  1. I always knew Robin would go far. He is now well on his way and the whole
    of Yorkshire will benefit.

  2. That’s great news the the Welcome to Yorkshire is back and the attempt to bring back Tour de Yorkshire will be fantastic.
    I hope everything goes well and they are back in business.

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