Ctrip, China’s largest online travel agency, is now in possession of 49% shares in its Indian counterpart, MakeMyTrip, along with 4% of total voting rights. Ctrip bought the equity from South African internet giant Naspers Ltd on a swap deal. The latter’s share in Ctrip now stands at 5.6%.
“We have worked with Ctrip in the past years and are excited to take this partnership to the next level. We will leverage this investment to benefit from the tremendous growth potential in travel and tourism between our two countries," Livemint quoted Deep Kalra, chairman and group chief executive officer, MakeMyTrip, as saying.
Ctrip and Naspers had put USD 330 million in MakeMyTrip around two years ago. Prior to that, Ctrip invested USD 180 million in the Indian OTA in January 2016.
“MakeMyTrip has transformed travel in India and beyond since 2000. The agreement we have announced today is a significant step in the growth ambitions of both MakeMyTrip and Ctrip, and we believe, continuing to support them as a shareholder will create additional value for Naspers and our shareholders," Livemint quoted Naspers CEO Bob van Dijk.
The market capitalisation of MakeMyTrip is around USD 2.69 billion as opposed to Ctrip’s USD 23.5 billion.
“Over the past years we have witnessed the great achievements of MakeMyTrip, and we are confident that MakeMyTrip will extend its success in the future. We are also delighted to welcome Naspers to become our shareholder. Ctrip will continue to work hard to create greater value to our customers, our partners and all shareholders,” read a statement from James Liang, co-founder and executive chairman of Ctrip.
Naspers said the share swap will occur at USD 32.30 per share. The deal also accounts for Naspers’ second major exit in India after Walmart’s acquisition of online market place Flipkart last year.