Baidu Helps Consummate 3-Way Travel Deal In China
After dancing around each other for years, a deal today marries two of China's top travel websites.
Chinese travel company Ctrip.com International, Ltd. completed a share exchange transaction with search engine Baidu, Inc. in which Baidu has exchanged 178,702,519 Class A ordinary shares and 11,450,000 Class B ordinary shares of Qunar Cayman Islands Limited beneficially owned by Baidu prior to the consummation of the transaction in exchange for 11,488,381 newly-issued ordinary shares of Ctrip.
The share exchange ratio for the transaction is 0.725 Ctrip ADSs per Qunar ADS. As a result of the transaction, Baidu will own ordinary shares of Ctrip representing approximately 25% of Ctrip's aggregate voting interest, and Ctrip will own ordinary shares of Qunar representing approximately 45% of travel search engine Qunar.com's aggregate voting interest.
Four representatives, including James Liang and Jane Sun, chairman and chief executive officer, and co-president and chief operating officer of Ctrip, respectively, have been appointed to Qunar's board of directors, and Robin Li and Tony Yip, chairman and chief executive officer, and vice president, head of investments, mergers and acquisitions of Baidu, respectively, have been appointed to Ctrip's board of directors.
Baidu and Ctrip have also agreed to a business cooperation across a broad base of products and services. Baidu expects to continue its existing business cooperation with Qunar.
"China travel is an industry with great potential. As the technology leading player in the industry, Qunar has become China's fourth largest e-commerce company with tremendous growth momentum," said CC Zhuang, CEO and co-founder of Qunar. "We are very proud of our team, and appreciate the support from our global shareholder base."