TUI Travel, TUI AG merger completes

People pass the logo of German travel company TUI AG at the company's headquarters in Hanover, February 13, 2013. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer

LONDON (Reuters) - The merger of Britain's TUI Travel TT.L and Germany's TUI AG TUIGn.DE completed on Wednesday, bringing to a conclusion a deal to create the world's largest leisure and tourism company which will be known as TUI Group.

London-listed TUI Travel and TUI AG, the British company’s biggest shareholder, reached an agreement in September on the terms of a 6.5 billion euro (5.15 billion pounds) merger.

The tie-up had been expected ever since TUI Travel was created in 2007 from the merger of Britain’s First Choice and the travel business of TUI AG, which had owned around 55 percent of the London-listed company.

Shares in TUI AG will be admitted to, and start trading on, the London Stock Exchange at 0800.

The merger is expected to result in 170 million euros of costs savings and tax benefits and will streamline a cumbersome holding structure that includes headquarters in both Britain and Germany and two separate stock market listings.

Reporting by Sarah Young; Editing by Neil Maidment