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India: MakeMyTrip, ibibo announce merger in $1.8-billion deal

 |  October 18, 2016

India’s two biggest travel platforms MakeMyTrip and ibibo on Tuesday announced the merger of the companies in a $1.8-billion deal. The venture will function under MakeMyTrip’s brand and will include its home stay service Rightstay and ibibo’s Ryde ride-sharing service, according to NDTV.

The ibibo group, which is jointly owned by South African technology group Naspers and Chinese investment firm Tencent, will own majority stake in the combined entity. MakeMyTrip said in a statement that Naspers and Tencent will own 40% stake in the group, and will “contribute proportionate working capital upon closing”.

If granted approval by regulators, the agreement will be one of the biggest consolidations in India’s online travel agency sector. The deal, expected to be finalised by December 2016, will not bring much change to MakeMyTrip’s ranks – its founder Deep Kalra will remain the Group CEO and executive chairman; Rajesh Magow will remain the chief executive of India operations; and ibibo CEO Ashish Kashyap will come on board as co-founder and president.

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