Concur increases India push with $40M stake in online travel agency Cleartrip

Concur increased its presence in India with a marketing partnership and $40 million strategic investment in online travel agency Cleartrip.

In so doing, Concur, which caters to business travelers with integrated travel and expense management solutions, takes a minority stake in India’s largest online travel agency and strengthens its recently established presence in the country.

Concur hopes to leverage the marketing partnership and strategic investment to expand its customer base and plans call for the two companies to integrate technologies to address the business travel market in India.

The two companies hope that by combining increased access to India travel content  from Cleartrip, including air, hotel and rail, with Concur’s travel and expense solutions, they can make increased inroads into the India corporate travel market.

Primarily knowns for its leisure travel offerings, Cleartrip also offers Cleartrip for Business, which enables companies to review reports online and then download them into CSV files.

“Together with Cleartrip, Concur will enable clients to capture Cleartrip-generated itineraries for end-to-end travel and expense reporting within Concur’s services,” the companies say.

Steve Singh, Concur’s chairman and CEO, says “it’s critical to focus on the local needs of each market in which we operate.”

He adds that “Concur plans to leverage the synergies of our combined technologies to help us expand our offerings, extend our reach and make business travel easier for the millions of travelers in India.

Asked for more details on the technology integration, Singh says “in the coming months we expect to have more concrete plans and roadmaps to share with our clients who will want to leverage our combined innovation.”

Mobile technologies and TripIt, which Singh characterized as “strategic priorities across the organization,” will likely be part of the mix.

In tandem with the investment in Cleartrip, Concur announced that it had established operations in India.

“Hundreds of multinational companies in the region already use Concur services,” Singh says. “The new office in India enhances Concur’s ability to deliver sales, service and development capabilities to better serve the local needs of the Indian business travel market.”

So, how are Concur and Cleartrip a fit given Concur’s business travel focus and Cleartrip’s leisure travel base?

Singh doesn’t directly answer the question, but says: “Concur is focused on helping our clients manage their corporate travel and expenses. Cleartrip is one of the leading travel portals in India. This deal enables Concur to better serve all of our clients seeking to better manage corporate travel and expense management in India.”

With the investment, Concur gets two seats on Cleartrip’s board.

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Dennis Schaal

About the Writer :: Dennis Schaal

Dennis Schaal was North American editor for Tnooz.



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