Last week, we predicted Flipkart would launch a travel marketplace. We covered the pending rumours around Flipkart’s entry into travel including the strong investor and board links between MakeMyTrip and Flipkart. It’s an exciting announcement with the potential to alter India’s online travel landscape.
Scale matters in the OTA business and the deal brings MakeMyTrip’s products and services to Flipkart’s 100 million+ registered users. Flights will come almost immediately with domestic bookings starting in the next few weeks followed by hotels, buses and holiday packages.
It’s unclear though what the offering will look like for Flipkart customers. So, we mocked up a Fliggy type UI. It will need to be a materially different experience to be compelling. Just inserting traditional OTA products into the platform in a white label like approach won’t be compelling enough.
Fliggy was Alitrip but when Alibaba replaced Alitrip with Fliggy they started from scratch and built a platform specifically designed to support and the marketplace model. We are eager to see what Flipkart brings to market with their domestic flight launch.
It’s been a busy week for Flipkart in the press as less than 24 hours ago speculation broke that Amazon was negotiating for a potential bid. WalMart and Flipkart were already rumoured to be in advance talks regarding a majority share sale.
The recent travel announcements just reinforce our earlier positions about the Flipkart culture and leadership. We have reached out to other industry leaders for comments and will provide updates here.
CEO’s from both rained positive PR on the announcement:
Kalyan Krishnamurthy, CEO of Flipkart said, “Flipkart and MakeMyTrip have played a defining role in shaping the consumer internet ecosystem in India and bringing millions of people online. This strategic partnership helps us make travel booking a seamless experience for customers, even those in the farthest regions, while also furthering our goal of being a one-stop destination for all digital transactions online.”
“This strategic partnership helps us make travel booking a seamless experience for customers”
Through the partnership, MakeMyTrip will be able to leverage Flipkart’s growing consumer base to drive online bookings in travel services. At present, Flipkart has over 100 million registered users.
Deep Kalra, founder and group CEO of MakeMyTrip added, “Flipkart is one of the most exciting companies of our times and we are delighted to partner with them to catalyse the massive online travel opportunity in India. This partnership will help us reach out to an even wider consumer base and further open up the online travel market in a significant way.”