China’s Ctrip to buy Skyscanner for £1.4bn

Chinese travel giant Ctrip is taking over Skyscanner in a deal worth £1.4 billion.

The current management team of the Scottish-based online travel search firm will continue to manage Skyscanner’s operations independently as part of the Ctrip group.

The deal with Ctrip – which achieved total transaction value of $24.5 billion in 2014 – is expected to be finalised by the end of the year.

Ctrip was founded in Shanghai in 1999 and is a growing global provider of accommodation reservations, transportation ticketing, package tours and corporate travel management in China.

The company yesterday reported third quarter net revenues of $836 million, a 75% increase over the same period in 2015, and achieved an improved operating income of $67 million.

Skyscanner co-founder and chief executive Gareth Williams said: “Ctrip is the clear market leader in China and a company we can learn a huge amount from.

“Today’s news takes Skyscanner one step closer to our goal of making travel search as simple as possible for travellers around the world.

“Ctrip and Skyscanner share a common view – that organising travel has a long way to go to being solved. To do so requires powerful technology and a traveller-first approach.

“In taking the next step to achieving our goal, Skyscanner will remain operationally independent and our growing global team will continue to innovate and deliver the products travellers know and love. It’s an exciting time for our business, our partners and the travellers who use us.”

Ctrip co-founder and executive chairman James Jianzhang Liang said: “Skyscanner is one of the largest travel search platforms in the world.

 “We are excited to welcome Skyscanner into the Ctrip group. Ctrip and Skyscanner share the same passion and dedication in providing travellers around the world with better services. This acquisition will strengthen long-term growth drivers for both companies.

“Skyscanner will complement our positioning at a global scale and Ctrip will leverage our experience, technology and booking capabilities to Skyscanner’s.”

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