Friday, September 6, 2013

Russian Online Hotel Booking Site Gobbles Up For “Up To $2 Million”

Some further consolidation in the Russian online travel sector. Following last month’s news that Russian travel startup OneTwoTrip had acquired the analytics-driven hotel price comparison site DealAngel, today Russia’s is announcing that it’s gobbled up local online travel portal The acquisition price is said to be “up to $2 million including stock incentives”, presumably including earn-out targets, while Oktogo says that the combined forces gives it an audience of 3 million unique monthly visitors, making it “by far the largest online travel destination serving independent travelers in Russia”. To that end, 1998-founded caters more for the discovery end of the online travel user-journey, calling itself a good old-fashioned “portal” and focusing on expert travel content, both editorial and user-generated, for Russian travellers. Meanwhile, Oktogo, which is backed by VTB Capital, Mangrove Capital Partners, Ventech and ABRT, is described as an online travel agency/aggregator. It offers offers over 5,000 hotels in Russia and over 250,000 hotels worldwide, claiming to have the biggest database of local hotels online. In a statement, Marina Kolesnik, co-founder and CEO of, talks up the synergies between the now combined companies: “We will further enhance the hotel product with unique content from and leverage our hotel product to better serve the loyal audience of As a result, we will be able to deliver a unique service to customers at different stages of decision making cycle – from those who gather information and search to those who shop and buy travel product.” That has echoes of the reasoning behind OneTwoTrip’s purchase of DealAngel — it’s about capturing as much of the value in the customer journey with regards to all things travel. And with the Russian online travel market said to exceed $10 billion in 2013, according to market research firm PhoCusWright, it’s easy to see why that’s an attractive proposition, and likely leading to further consolidation.

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