Cox & Kings Acquires UK Based LateRooms for Rs.85 Cr from Rival TUI

(Source)

Cox & Kings has acquired UK-based LateRooms (Source)

Mumbai-based Peter Kerkar-owned travel firm Cox & Kings Ltd has acquired UK-based hotel booking website LateRooms.com for £8.5 million (Rs.85 crore).

The acquisition comes in well with company’s strategic move to expand its footprint globally and B2C leisure proposition. With the help of this deal, the company will be able to offer a wider bouquet of options for its outbound customers from India.

LateRooms is owned by German travel TUI Group. It claims to have 150,000 properties around the world on its portfolio that can be booked up to a year in advance and a user base of 3.5 million. The company has become a wholly owned subsidiary of Cox & Kings from October 1 and will function independently.

Peter Kerkar,Cox & Kings Director talking about the acquisition said, “We are confident that bringing the LateRooms brand and technology into the fold will provide a significant boost to Cox & Kings’ growth trajectory and technology capabilities.”

Founded in 1999, LateRooms was started as a price comparison site initially and later in 2002 its model was moved to an online transaction property for hotels. In 2006, British travel firm First Choice acquired it for £120 million. Post which the company First Choice merged with TUI Group.

Laterooms operates as a single web platform. As the company claims it has 3.5 million opted-in and active consumers and around 57% of its traffic came from smartphones and tablets during the financial year ended September 30. It also claims to have had around 93 million online visits during the financial year. The company’s total transaction value was £300 million and net revenue of £50 million for the year.

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Cox & Kings CFO, Anil Khandewal talking about the deal said that Europe is the key focus area for the firm as the European leisure market contributes 29% of company’s net revenues, almost 50% of the net revenues comes from there.

Cox & Kings has been actively expanding its business abroad. It is a veteran travel company that traces its history back to 1758. The company has an online portal, but is still lagging in the race when it comes to online travel eCommerce in India. However with this acquisition it will get a route to better its technology.

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