EaseMyTrip is looking to step up acquisitions as it eyes an increase in its non-air travel business. At least three acquisitions are expected within this fiscal, Prashant Pitti, co-founder and executive director of the company, said.
Acquisitions will mostly be targeted towards profitable, asset-light, tech-driven and disruptive businesses, Pitti added. The company can use part of its free cash of ₹250 crore, while exploring other options like using equity that includes share-swap (or equity swap) to fund inorganic growth.
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EaseMyTrip will hold a board meet on December 1 to consider a prospective acquisition. “We have not earmarked any fund ... Some three-odd acquisitions are expected, but these could be global ones too,” Pitti told businessline.
EaseMyTrip, which competes with the likes of MakeMyTrip and Yatra, reported gross booking revenues at ₹1,978 crore during Q2 FY23, up 120 per cent y-o-y. Nearly 90 per cent of its gross booking revenues are generated from air ticketing services; while the remaining is from other services like hotel bookings, train ticketing and cab service bookings and so on. In Q2, the hotels business witnessed a 70 per cent y-o-y growth.
Over the next three years, it is looking at a 70:30 break-up in gross booking revenues between flights and other non-flight services. “We continue to gain market share and grow internationally,” Pitti said, adding that the company is also ramping up international operations.
EaseMyTrip has partnered with SpiceJet, through its Thai subsidiary EaseMyTrip Thai, to sell tickets and other services to customers in Thailand. It is already setting up subsidiary in other countries like the US, the UK, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, UAE and also has corporate offices in Dubai and London.
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The Dubai office reported a gross merchandise value of ₹24 crore in Q2, which stood at ₹7 crore in Q1.
Discounting going down
According to Pitti, leisure travel continues to witness a strong rebound in India and corporate travel is coming back too. Discounting – which many of the OTAs use – is witnessing “stability” and is now “settling at the 3 per cent-odd levels” — the pre-Covid numbers. Discounting had jumped up to 4.5-4.9 per cent for the sector during FY22.
“We see discounting settling down at 2.5-3 per cent in the coming days, basically at the pre-Covid levels. For this fiscal, it is so far at 3 per cent, which is somewhat on expected lines,” he said.