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Exclusive: Oyo enters Spain and Portugal, hires former local CEO of Groupon


Ever since the beginning of this year, Oyo has been on an international expansion spree. After launching in six countries including China, Dubai, UK, Indonesia amongst others, the SoftBank-backed company is launching in Spain and Portugal.

“The company has launched operations in Spanish cities including Madrid, Valencia, Andalusia and Barcelona earlier this month with a clutch of properties,” reveal two sources on condition of anonymity. Meanwhile, Oyo is also gearing up for launch in Portugal soon.

With these two countries, the budget hotel chain will have a fairly strong presence in Europe. It already had launched in the UK. Entrackr was first to report about Oyo launch in London.

To drive operations in Spain and Portugal, it already has hired former Spain’s Groupon CEO – Tobias Jörk. Besides, the company has aggressively been hiring for business development and HR functions in the aforementioned cities.

Entrackr has sent queries to Oyo’s spokesperson for confirmation and more details. We will update the post as response comes in.

In October this year, Oyo entered Malaysia and UAE. Six months ago, the company began operations in China and now claims that it manages more rooms in the country than India. Recently, it roped in former IndiGo President Aditya Ghosh as the CEO for India and South Asia.

Oyo wants to dethrone Marriott (with 1.4 million rooms a day) to become world’s largest chain globally by 2023. With a significant focus towards making an inroads in international markets this year, the aspiration seems promising.

The Ritesh Agarwal-led company had recently scooped up around $1 billion fund at whopping $5 billion valuation. It became third valuable startup in India after Flipkart ($20 billion) and Paytm ($10 billion).

Besides SoftBank, it has got backing from investors including Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Venture, and Hero Enterprise and China Lodging Group.

While Oyo has been spreading footprints in the global market swiftly, several experts outline that this strategy may not pay off well as it’s costing distraction from the core market (India). In a not real long haul, it would be interesting to see how Oyo’s aggressive international expedition fares up.

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