Ixigo acquires AbhiBus as pandemic continues to churn travel industry

Mumbai: IPO-bound online travel portal Ixigo has acquired Hyderabad-based AbhiBus, making the ticketing and aggregation platform the latest to succumb to a pandemic-induced slowdown in transportation.

The slump sale includes a mix of cash and Ixigo stock as consideration.

“The AbhiBus team, led by its founder Sudhakar Reddy Chirra, have joined the Ixigo team, and all intellectual property, brands, technology and operations are being transferred to Ixigo,” according to a statement released Thursday. The deal will help Ixigo consolidate its presence in Tier II/III/IV markets by “offering a multi-modal transportation experience” to the combined user base of 255 million users.

Founded in 2008 by Chirra, AbhiBus provides end-to-end software and other value-added solutions, such as e-ticketing systems and fleet and logistics management solutions. The company also provides technology solutions to private bus operators and state transport corporations in India. It counts IRCTC Ltd. as a partner.

According to industry reports, AbhiBus was the second largest bus aggregator in India in 2019-20, selling 26,000 bus tickets per day through its platform.

“We remain committed as a team towards our joint vision of serving the underserved market segment of the next billion travelers for whom trains, and buses are the primary modes of transportation,” Chirra said.

The Ixigo-AbhiBus deal is the latest in an ongoing consolidation in India’s travel industry.

  • In 2019, Ebix acquired travel portal Yatra.com for $337.8 million.
  • Ixigo acquired train booking app Confirmtkt earlier this year.

Founded by Aloke Bajpai and Rajnish Kumar, Ixigo is backed by affiliates of Sequoia Capital and Elevation Capital, among other investors. Last week, it
raised $53 million (about Rs 400 crore) from investors led by Singapore’s sovereign wealtjh fund GIC Pte Ltd, ahead of its proposed initial public offering (IPO).

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“AbhiBus has built an innovative and high-growth company with deep penetration on the supply side across state road transport corporations and private bus operators and on the demand side, as the dominant bus ticketing brand in several Indian states,” Bajpai and Kumar said in the statement. “By leveraging our combined user base, multi-modal transportation capabilities, technology resources and travel domain expertise we will be able to enhance the experience of millions of travellers in India every day.”



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