With this acquisition, Paytm plans to be Asia’s biggest hotel booking destination by 2020Tarush Bhalla
Indian payments conglomerate Paytm on Wednesday confirmed the acquisition of hotel-booking platform Nightstay, launching the domestic hotel bookings vertical on its platform for an undisclosed amount.
Through this acquisition, the company will leverage Nightstay’s acumen to further expand its portfolio in this vertical. Nasr Khan, former Founder & CEO of Nightstay, will be leading this category at Paytm, and will be responsible for the overall growth and development as well.
With this launch, the Indian payments major will bolster its travel vertical, which already includes travel bookings and Forex services. Committed to this growth, the company also announced that it will be investing upwards of Rs 500 crore for scaling its operations and expanding its portfolio.
This foray will mean that Paytm customers can access over 50,000 (daily room nights) from handpicked top-quality hotels, all of which meet its strict standards for quality, health, and safety.
The company aims to increase this number to two million hotels, and alternate accommodations globally, with the availability of 50 million rooms within the first 18 months, striving to be one of biggest hotel booking destination by 2020.
Started in 2014, Paytm Travel at present claims to sell over 60 million tickets annually, and has become the leading player for IRCTC tickets, bus tickets, and flight bookings.
Earlier this year, Paytm Travel also started offering foreign exchange bookings for international travelers. In the first phase of hotels launch, the company has partnered with over 5,000 hotels across the budget, luxury and business segments. These include the Zuri, Sarovar, Treebo, Vresorts, Sterling, Ginger and Bloomrooms among other marquee chains across top cities.
Commenting on the travel vertical, Madhur Deora, Chief Financial Officer, Paytm said,
“The momentum we’re building in our travel vertical is remarkable, with leading positions in rail, bus and flight bookings. The launch of domestic hotel bookings is an important step as it will help travelers around the country conveniently plan and book their perfect trip on Paytm. We want to offer the broadest travel selection on our platform, and look forward to continuing our expansion with the help of our trusted travel partners.”
Nasr Khan, Vice-president, Paytm said,
“I am excited to be a part of the Paytm team and lead the hotels vertical. I believe that my experience in this domain combined with the platform’s reach and credibility will help deliver a delightful experience to our users.”
The Indian payments major will be working closely with partner hotels to build innovative technology-driven solutions to offer a more rewarding and delightful experience to its customers.
Tarush is driven towards delivering unbiased and accurate reportage while engaging with as many mediums as possible to narrate a fresh perspective. Working for the past few years in the digital space with YourStory, he has covered the Indian technology ecosystem extensively, focusing on new age Fintech companies, while building strong connects within the industry.