Cleartrip to retain brand identity even after Flipkart fully acquires it

Flipkart didn’t reveal the transaction's financial details, but the deal value is reportedly about $40 million
E-commerce firm Flipkart has announced its proposed acquisition of Cleartrip, a leading online travel technology company. Walmart-owned Flipkart will acquire 100 per cent of Cleartrip’s shareholding, as the company further enhances its investments to strengthen its digital commerce offerings for customers.  

Under the terms of the agreement, Cleartrip operations will be acquired by Flipkart. Cleartrip will continue to operate as a separate brand. It would retain all employees while working closely with Flipkart to further develop technology solutions to make travel simple for customers.   Flipkart didn’t reveal the transaction's financial details, but the deal value is reportedly about $40 million.

“The Flipkart Group is committed to transforming customer experiences through digital commerce. Cleartrip is synonymous with travel for many customers, and as we diversify and look at new areas of growth, this investment will help strengthen our wide range of offerings for customers,” said Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO, Flipkart Group. “We welcome the Cleartrip team with their deep industry knowledge and technology capabilities to the Flipkart Group and look forward to providing deeper value and travel experiences for customers together.”                    

Stuart Crighton, CEO and co-founder of Cleartrip, said Cleartrip has been a pioneer in capitalising on technology to simplify the travel experience for customers. This product-driven focus has enabled it to become the preferred travel partner of choice for consumers in a wide range of markets in the region. “We are delighted to be part of the Flipkart family and are excited about the positive impact this collaboration can have for our customers and the travel industry in general,” said Crighton.

The deal closing will be subject to applicable regulatory approvals.

According to industry sources, the move will enable Flipkart to take on travel companies such as MakeMyTrip, Yatra, Booking.com, and EaseMyTrip. Flipkart expects a boom in travel and tourism as the economy recovers from the pandemic-induced slowdown.

Apart from air travel, Flipkart would also be able to offer train bookings through Cleartrip, which has a partnership with IRCTC.

In 2018, Flipkart formed a strategic partnership with MakeMyTrip in the travel services segment. The aim was for MakeMyTrip’s multiple brands —including MakeMyTrip, Goibibo and redBus — to leverage Flipkart’s large customer base to drive online bookings in travel services.

In 2019, Flipkart strengthened its travel offering by introducing an enhanced native experience in partnership with Ixigo, a mobile travel platform. Last year, Flipkart’s rival Amazon India partnered IRCTC. Incidentally, last year, Amazon also partnered Cleartrip to add a flight-booking option to Amazon Pay.

Cleartrip reported loss of Rs 14 crore in FY20, a 53 per cent decrease compared with the previous year, and revenues of Rs 319 crore, according to Tofler.



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