Published on : Thursday, September 14, 2017
One of the largest hotel organizer startups, Oyo has pulled $250 million round led by SoftBank’s Vision Fund last week but now it has peaked that money up with a $10 million strategic investment from multi-billion dollar hotel management firm China Lodging.
It is beyond the financial commitment from NASDAQ-listed China Lodging — which was formerly known as Huazhu Hotels and is valued at $6.8 billion.
The two companies work together and learn from each other going forward in travel and tourism industry, as opposed to operating some form of joint entity.
There’s no specific business agreement in place at this point, instead the duo will explore initiating knowledge and technology sharing projects of mutual interest.
OYO explained that this could constitute employee exchange program, and the sharing of tech and IP.
On a more consumer-facing level, OYO and China Lodging will consider joint loyalty programs and ways to work together on hotel sourcing and procurement.
For OYO, that may comprise of the learning from a hotel industry ally who operates at scale and in another billion-person market, China.
China Lodging operates over 3,500 hotels across some 369 cities in China, out of which 700 were opened last year alone.
China Lodging also owns the rights to global brands like Mercure, Ibis and Novotel. It operates an OYO-like budget offering, Hanting, aimed at reaching more cost conscious or younger customers.
OYO is coming at the industry from a more disruptive angle.
This Indian based hotel agency focuses on reasonable stays using a budget hotel network that offers standardized services like clean towels, free WiFi and hot water which aren’t always guaranteed by the masses of affordable hotels scattered across India.