Oyo, the SoftBank-backed Gurgaon-based hospitality chain, is deepening its presence in Europe with the purchase of Netherlands-based vacation rental company @Leisure Group for an estimated €369 million (USD 413 million). This is Oyo’s biggest acquisition ever. German media company Axel Springer had said on Wednesday it would sell its majority stake in @Leisure to Oyo.
Oyo is currently present only in the UK with 30 hotels under its flagship brands, Oyo Hotels and Oyo Townhouse. @Leisure Group has more than 30,000 holiday homes across 13 countries in Europe. Through its Traum-Ferienwohnungen brand, it offers a subscription-based home management service, with over 85,000 homes across 50 countries, according to the statement.
Oyo said in its statement that the acquisition would combine Oyo’s capabilities of asset management and technology with the local know-how and category-specific expertise of @Leisure Group in the vacation rentals space.
Ritesh Agarwal, founder and CEO of Oyo, said, “We see vacation homes as a unique opportunity, with 115,000 units of homes now getting added to our already growing count of beautiful homes and we are excited to continue maintaining our global industry leadership.”
Tobias Wann, CEO of @Leisure Group, said the company is delighted to join forces with Oyo. “@Leisure Group was started with a similar mission to identify and service all forms of vacation and urban home rentals, focusing on delivering a hassle-free experience to both homeowners and guests.”
Agarwal also said @Leisure Group has proven capabilities in helping develop Europe into a vacation rentals hotspot. “We are keen to leverage their competencies towards ensuring beautiful vacation rental and urban homes experience for millions of tourists from every part of the world," he said.
Oyo will now be present in over 800 cities across 24 countries, including the US, India, China, Malaysia, Nepal, the UAE, Indonesia and Japan. Launched in 2017, Oyo Homes has more than 15,000 villas and apartment units, globally.
In April, US-based multinational hospitality chain Airbnb invested nearly USD 200 million in Oyo as part of the Indian startup’s Series E funding round. The deal will allow Oyo’s 10,000 villas and homes in India, Dubai and other markets to be listed on the Airbnb platform, expanding Oyo’s international reach and strengthening Airbnb’s presence in Asia. For Airbnb, listing Oyo’s rooms under management will boost its inventory in a market where it is yet to make a big impact.
Oyo has also gotten into a joint venture with SoftBank to launch its operations in Japan. It acquired its Chinese competitor Islands Hotel in March this year, paving the way for the company to expand its presence in Beijing and Shanghai.