Alibaba Group (BABA) is concluding a deal to buy 15 per cent of shares in Beijing Shiji Information Technology Co. Ltd (Shiji Information).
Having already invested in Chinese travel website Qyer.com last year, the travel site run by Taobao (China) Software Co., Ltd, which is just one of the seven subsiderariy groups of Alibaba, will use the new Shiji software to integrate booking facilities in both foreign and domestic hotels all over China. The stake in Shiji will cost RMB2.81 billion/ $457 million and will give Alibaba Group one seat on the board and a 15 per cent holding.
Alibaba reports that they will “work together to connect the systems of Taobao Travel vertical with Shiji Information's systems, with the aim to continue to strengthen Alibaba Group's service capability in the online travel market.”
Shiji systems are currently operational in over 6,000 high-end hotels offering a service that connects hotel information, booking systems, member service platforms and payments through scan technology.
2014 has been a very busy year for Alibaba with the record-breaking launch of Alibaba’s IPO on the New York stock exchange, and the Shiji acquisition being just one of more of a dozen deals done over the course of the last twelve months.
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